September 20, 2018 / 2:22 AM / in 7 months

Peru's Congress renews confidence in Vizcarra's cabinet

Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra greets Prime Minister Cesar Villanueva outside Government Palace in Lima, Peru September 19, 2018. Courtesy of Presidential Palace/Handout via REUTERS

LIMA (Reuters) - Peru’s opposition-run Congress renewed its confidence in the cabinet of President Martin Vizcarra on Wednesday, averting a political crisis that could have forced new legislative elections.

The 82-22 vote in favor of Vizcarra commits Congress to passing his judicial and political reforms, and marks a rare victory over the conservative opposition party that controls the single-chamber legislature.

Vizcarra called for a vote of confidence late on Sunday to force passage of legislation to curb graft and rebuild trust in public institutions following back-to-back scandals in recent years.

Under Peru’s constitution, a vote of no-confidence would have forced Vizcarra to replace his entire cabinet, but he would have been allowed to call new legislative elections.

Reporting By Mitra Taj; Editing by Darren Schuettler

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