Peru president ousted and arrested after bid to dissolve Congress

Peru's leftist leader Pedro Castillo was impeached and replaced as president on Wednesday in a dizzying series of events in the country that has long been prone to political upheaval.

Dina Boluarte, a 60-year-old lawyer, was sworn in as Peru's first female president just hours after Castillo tried to wrest control of the legislature in a move criticised as an attempted coup.

The day of high drama began with Castillo facing his third impeachment attempt since the former rural school teacher unexpectedly took power from Peru's traditional political elite 18 months ago.

In a televised address to the nation, the 53-year-old announced that he was dissolving the opposition-dominated Congress, installing a curfew, and would rule by decree.

As criticism poured in over the address, lawmakers defiantly gathered earlier than planned to debate the impeachment motion and approved it, with 101 votes out of a total of 130 lawmakers.

Castillo was impeached for his "moral incapacity" to exercise power, after a litany of crises including six investigations against him, five cabinet reshuffles and large protests.