On Monday informal mine workers blocked three kilometers of the Inter-Oceanic Highway for six hours, and burnt nearby shops.
They did so in protest of the Aurum 1 program, a joint operation between the Army and National Police, carried out on Saturday November 5, which aimed to stop illegal miners from operating, and contaminating the rain forest in Madre de Dios.
So far authorities have destroyed 130 boats and dredges, belonging to illegal miners.
On Monday about 5,000 miners and some traders blocked the road between Cusco and Puerto Maldonado with tires as well as plastic and wooded tables, between kilometers 107 and 110 of the highway.
The police tried to dispel them using tear gas, but that only intensified the situation, reported El Comercio.
During the day, protesters set fire to 25 shops located near the highway, according to reports at least two people suffered severe burns.
According to protestors, they will intensify protests and organize an indefinite strike in the city.
"There are many more. Most of our partners in the camps are taking care of the engines. We are afraid that the police will continue to destroy our investment," said one protester.
Meanwhile, the Miners\’ Federation of Madre de Dios (Fedemin) said they would not participate in a possible shutdown of Puerto Maldonado.
Due to the informal mining interventions, police have arranged to have 900 policemen in the area.
According to police sources, there are about 30,000 people dedicated to informal mining, who could eventually join the protests.