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CNN BREAKING NEWS

Several Small Bombs Explode in Lima, Peru

Aired March 23, 2002 - 13:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KATE SNOW, CNN ANCHOR: We have some breaking news to report to you. President Bush is scheduled to arrive in Peru in the next few hours. There have been some reports of small explosions in the street of Lima. CNN's Gary Tuchman joins us by phone from Lima with the latest.

Gary, can you explain these reports of small explosions?

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Kate, what we need to emphasize is there's been no casualties whatsoever. The police here in Peru are reporting that somebody has thrown 10 small homemade bombs from a moving vehicle in the eastern portion of Lima. It's not anywhere near where President Bush will be later today.

No one has been hurt, but of course the security here is intense, especially considering what happened Wednesday night about 100 yards away from the U.S. Embassy when a car bomb went off and killed nine people. So the security is elaborate. Everyone is looking out for everything and these 10 small bombs are making people quite nervous here. But nevertheless, it's important to point out no one has been hurt from these bombs.

We also want to point out in the eastern portion of Lima near the justice headquarters here in the capitol, just a short time ago some demonstrators were outside and police released tear gas to disperse them. We were in the middle of it, so we knew that firsthand.

When the tear gas was released, the demonstrators dispersed and so far there have been no major problems of any kind as Peru waits for President George W. Bush to arrive.

It's very important to emphasize, to keep into context here that most Peruvians are very excited about the U.S. President coming here. It's the first time a sitting U.S. President has ever visited this nation. We've been out on the streets the last few days and people keep talking about how important they think this is for their nation.

So the number of people who are demonstrating against the visit, and the number of people who have been causing trouble is very small compared to the number of people who are excited about this visit -- Kate.

SNOW: And, Gary, just to clarify, the president is not there on the ground yet. This happened before he ever arrived, right? TUCHMAN: President Bush has not arrived here yet in Lima. He's expected to arrive very soon. So this has happened, these latest incidents before President Bush has arrived here, yes.

SNOW: Gary Tuchman, live from Lima, Peru on the phone. Thank you so much for clarifying.

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