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Scenes From Peru

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Earlier this year, Peru celebrated the 100th anniversary of the scientific discovery of the citadel of Machu Picchu. Peruvians also held a presidential election, with 49-year-old former Army Lieutenant Colonel Ollanta Humala narrowly winning in a run-off against Keiko Fujimori, daughter of jailed ex-president Alberto Fujimori. Humala, the first leftist president of Peru in more than 30 years, faces a number of challenges as he takes the helm of this diverse nation of some 29 million people. Peru remains a developing country, but its economy is improving and it still has considerable mineral wealth. However, citizens and activist groups remain concerned about ongoing and potential environmental damage from extracting those resources -- and miners have been striking, seeking better working conditions and a larger share of the profits. Gathered here are some recent scenes from all around the Republic of Peru. [42 photos]

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Performers attend a light show at the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, on July 7, 2011. Peru celebrated the 100th anniversary of the scientific discovery of Machu Picchu by American adventurer and archaeologist Hiram Bingham. (Reuters/Oscar Farje/Presidency)
Performers attend a light show at the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, on July 7, 2011. Peru celebrated the 100th anniversary of the scientific discovery of Machu Picchu by American adventurer and archaeologist Hiram Bingham. (Reuters/Oscar Farje/Presidency)
The ruins of the Machu Picchu citadel, 130 km northwest of Cuzco, Peru, on July 6, 2011. The Inca compound was being prepared for the centennial commemoration of its discovery by American adventurer and archaeologist Hiram Bingham in 1911. Machu Picchu sits at 2,350 meters above sea level in the heart of the Urubamba valley in southern Peru, 510 kilometers south of Lima. (Cris Bouroncle/AFP/Getty Images) #
A girl wearing a traditional regional Andean attire participates in a civic parade on July 6, 2011 in the town of Machu Picchu at the mountain base under the Inca citadel as part of the festivities commemorating the centennial of its discovery. (Cris Bouroncle/AFP/Getty Images) #
The ruins of the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu are illuminated on the evening of July 7, 2011 during a light and sound show as the final act in the commemorative celebration marking the centennial of its discovery. The complex, which remained unknown to Spanish conquerors, is now visited by up to 250,000 people every year. (Cris Bouroncle/AFP/Getty Images) #
A lifeguard releases Tomas, a lost Humboldt penguin, near a penguin colony on San Lorenzo Island, on January 26, 2011. Tomas was rescued by lifeguards on Sunday after losing his way and landing at the beach of Agua Dulce in the Lima district of Chorrillos. Humboldt penguins, poached for meat and sought after as household pets, are considered an endangered species according the Peruvian Ministry of Agriculture. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
A view of Lima, seen from the top of Morro Solar hill in Lima's district of Chorrillos, on June 16, 2011. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
A cook prepares traditional Peruvian food during the Mistura gastronomic fair in Lima, on September 9, 2011. The fair aims to promote Peruvian cuisine by showcasing Peruvian food and products from all over the country. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
Models on the catwalk wear creations of Peruvian clothes designer Ana Maria Guiulfo during the opening day of the Lima Fashion Week and Peru Moda 2011, on April 27. (Cris Bouroncle/AFP/Getty Images) #
Miners work at a legal gold mining concession in Huaypetue, Madre de Dios, Peru, on May 21, 2011. Government efforts to halt illegal mining in the area have mostly been futile. The state of Madre de Dios prides itself on its biodiversity and attracts eco-tourists for its monkeys, macaws and anacondas. But an estimated 35 metric tons of mercury is released annually by miners in this state alone, slowly poisoning people, plants, animals and fish, scientific studies show. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix) #
An illegal gold dredge burns on a river near the Amazon city of Puerto Maldonado, on February 19, 2011. Army forces on Saturday initiated the destruction of illegal gold dredges on the rivers of the southern Amazon region of Madre de Dios where every year, about 50,000 acres of Peruvian rainforest are destroyed and 45 tons of mercury pollute the rivers due to illegal gold mining, according to the Environment Ministry. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
A boy rows a boat on a lake at Pacaya Samiria National Reserve in the Amazon jungle, on September 3, 2011. The Pacaya Samiria National Reserve, measuring close to 5 million acres, is the biggest national reserve in Peru, containing 85 natural lakes which are home to 250 species of fish as well as both pink and gray freshwater dolphins. (Reuters/Pilar Olivares) #
Children dressed in purple carry a replica of Peru's most revered Catholic religious icon, "the Lord of the Miracles", during a procession in Lima, on September 4, 2011. Every year, 2,500 children of the "Children's Brotherhood of The Lord of Miracles", between 9 and 15 years old, participate in the procession to carry a 300 kg (661 pound) replica of the religious icon along Lima's main square, before the actual festival in October. The icon's name originated in the 17th century after an earthquake destroyed most of the city, leaving only that mural standing. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
Children listen to a mass before a procession to commemorate the "Lord of the Miracles", in Lima, on September 4, 2011. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
Dogs bark at a man dressed as a giant guinea pig during a campaign rally for Peru's presidential candidate Pedro Pablo Kuczynski at Cerro San Cosme in Lima, on April 1, 2011. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
A Quechua indigenous woman votes as she carries her child during the presidential runoff election in Ollantaytambo village in Peru, on Sunday June 5, 2011. Peruvians voted in their country's closely contested presidential race between Keiko Fujimori, daughter of jailed ex-president Alberto Fujimori and Ollanta Humala, a former military officer. The sign reads in Spanish "Voting booth." (AP Photo/Esteban Felix) #
Peru's newly sworn-in President Ollanta Humala waves people from an open car outside the National Congress in Lima, Peru, on Thursday July 28, 2011. Sworn in on Peru's Independence Day, the 49-year-old former army lieutenant colonel won office in a runoff vote in June. (AP Photo) #
People ride the waves during a day at Agua Dulce beach in Lima's district of Chorrillos, on February 26, 2011. Agua Dulce (Sweet Water) is one of the most popular beaches in Lima's Green Coast. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
The Sinakara Valley, where celebrations in honor of the Lord of "Qoyllur Rit'i" take place in Cuzco, on June 21, 2011. The annual festivity of the Lord of "Qoyllur Rit'i" or Lord of the Snow Star attracts thousands of pilgrims, dancers and musicians from surrounding regions with processions and dances around the sacred shrine. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
Andean dancers wearing feathered hats walk during celebrations in honor of the Lord of "Qoyllur Rit'i" near the town of Tayankani in Cuzco, on June 22, 2011. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
"Ukukus" or protectors of the Lord "Qoyllur Rit'i" descend from a glacier with a cross during celebrations in honor of the Lord at the Sinakara Valley in Cuzco, on June 21, 2011. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
"Ukukus" or protectors of the Lord "Qoyllur Rit'i" stand next to crosses on a glacier during celebrations in honor of the Lord at the Sinakara Valley in Cuzco, on June 21, 2011. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
Girls play in the central square of Leymebamba, in the Andean region of Chachapoyas, on July 17, 2011. The district of Leymebamba is situated in the river valley of a feeder of the Amazon River. The Utcubamba river is an agricultural and livestock area inhabited by the Chachapoyas culture during 800 AD. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
A dinosaur replica of the Iguanodon is seen during the exhibition "Dinosaurs of Peru" at the Kennedy Park in Miraflores district of Lima, on September 6, 2011. The exhibition features various dinosaur species which inhabited Peruvian territory in the Mesozoic Era. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
An otorongo or jaguar (Panthera onca) named Daniela plays with her six week old baby at the Parque de Las Leyendas zoo in Lima, on June 24, 2011. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
A melanic otorongo or jaguar cub at the Parque de Las Leyendas zoo in Lima, on June 24, 2011. Twin melanic jaguar babies were shown to the press at the zoo. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
A worker restores images of a procession of prisoners, at a wall in the temple of Huaca de La Luna in Trujillo, on September 14, 2011. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
The remains of a child, part of a recently-discovered group of 42 children and 74 camelids that were sacrificed approximately 800 years ago in the fishing town of Huanchaquito, Peru, on September 13, 2011. Archaeologists unearthed the remains, part of a massive sacrifice that formed part of a religious ceremony of the pre-Inca Chimu culture for the fertility of the ocean and the land. This represents the most important discovery related to human and animal sacrifices of the Chimu culture in terms of numbers of excavated individuals, according to Oscar Gabriel Prieto, chief archaeologist of the project. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
An archaeologist catalogs the bones of a camelid, part of unearthed archaeological remains found at tombs of children belonging to the Chimu culture, sacrificed approximately 800 years ago in the fishing town of Huanchaquito, Peru on September 13, 2011. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
The mummy of a mountain cat from about 800 AD is displayed at the Museum of Leymebamba, in the Andean region of Chachapoyas, on July 16, 2011. The Museo Leymebamba displays more than 200 mummies from the Chachapoyas culture and their burial offerings recovered in 1997 from the Laguna de los Condores. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
Mummies from the Chachapoyas culture from about 800 AD are displayed at the Museum of Leymebamba, in the Andean region of Chachapoyas, on July 16, 2011. The mummies have been wrapped in layers of cloth, creating a microclimate that promotes conservation, according to the Museum. The skin of the mummies has also been treated and appears leathery with preserved facial features. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
Kuelap Fortress, 3,000 meters (9,840 feet) above sea level, in the Andean region of Chachapollas, in this aerial view taken June 25, 2011. The archaeological site of Kuelap, constructed by the pre-Inca Chachapollas community in about 800 AD, consists of more than four hundred buildings with stone walls up to 19 meters (62 feet) tall. (Reuters/Janine Costa) #
A general view of makeshift houses at a shanty town in Huaycan, a district on the outskirts of Lima, on April 9, 2011. (Reuters/Mariana Bazo) #
An Andean condor flies over the Colca canyon at the Colca valley in Arequipa, south of Lima, on January 30, 2011. The Colca canyon, one of the deepest in the world, with its maximum depth of 3,386 meters (11,110 feet). It is one of the most visited sites in Peru by tourists looking for condors and Andean terraces. The canyon is the natural habitat of the Andean condor (Vultur gryphus), an endangered species that has seen worldwide effort to conserve it. (Reuters/Pilar Olivares) #
A man rows a "Caballo de totora", a boat made with a plant known as Totora, as he heads one of the Uros floating islands on Lake Titicaca, in Puno, Peru, on May 29, 2011. (AP Photo/Juan Karita) #
A girl runs on one of the Uros floating islands on Lake Titicaca in Puno, Peru, on May 29, 2011. The Uros islands are known as "floating" ones because they are made of "totora", a plant that grows on Lake Titicaca, and is woven to form a floating surface. (AP Photo/Juan Karita) #
The relatives of two soldiers who were killed in an attack attend the military funerals at an army base in Lima, Peru, on September 15, 2011. Peru's military said two soldiers, Esneider Vasquez and Jenner Vidarte, were killed in an attack by Shining Path rebels on a military helicopter in a remote coca-growing region. Peru's military has been trying without much success since 2008 to defeat remnants of the Shining Path who operate in the region, profiting from the cocaine trade. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia) #
Workers from Argentine firm Pluspetrol clean up after an oil spill in the Amazon region of Loreto, on August 10, 2011. Approximately 1,100 barrels of oil were leaked into the jungle. A press release from Pluspetrol company said a pipeline had been vandalized, causing the spill that will take a month to clean up. (Reuters/Antonio Escalante) #
Peruvian Aymara peasants block the road that leads to the border with Bolivia in Desaguadero, Peru, on May 24, 2011. The protesters oppose the Canadian Santa Ana silver mining project they say will pollute the Desaguadero River and Lake Titicaca. (Aizar Raldes/AFP/Getty Images) #
A man crosses a bridge at Peru's Pacaya Samiria National Reserve in the Amazon jungle, on September 4, 2011. The reserve is the biggest national reserve in Peru and is home to 132 mammal species and more than 400 tropical bird species. (Reuters/Pilar Olivares) #
A baby wearing a crown suckles a breast during a breastfeeding contest organized by Peru's Health Ministry in Lima, on August 19, 2011. The winning babies were those that managed to suckle their mother's milk for the longest period of time non-stop. (Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) #
A statue of Jesus stands above homes in Lima, Peru, on June 23, 2011. The towering statue of Jesus on a cliff overlooking the Pacific appearss, at first glance, like Rio de Janeiro's Christ the Redeemer, a famed icon of Brazil on the Atlantic side of the continent. The resemblance is not accidental. To many Peruvians, the new statue has become a symbol of Brazil's growing commercial and political influence in this Andean nation and across South America. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia) #
A cruise boat at sunset, on the Maranon river at Peru's Pacaya Samiria National Reserve in the Amazon jungle, on September 4, 2011. (Reuters/Pilar Olivares) #

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