Peru will seek criminal charges against Greenpeace activists who it says damaged the world-renowned Nazca lines by leaving footprints in the adjacent desert during a publicity stunt.
“It’s a true slap in the face at everything Peruvians consider sacred,” said Luis Jaime Castillo, the deputy culture minister, after the action by the environmental group on Monday, at the famed drawings etched into Peru’s coastal desert, a UN world heritage site.
He said the government was seeking to prevent those responsible from leaving the country while it asks prosecutors to file charges of attacking archaeological monuments, a crime punishable by up to six years in prison.
The activists entered a “strictly prohibited” area beside the figure of a hummingbird, the culture ministry said. They laid big yellow cloth letters reading: “Time for Change! The Future is Renewable.” The message was intended for delegates from 190 countries at the UN climate talks being held in Lima.