Lima Syndrome Is Stockholm Syndrome’s Lesser-Known Opposite, Where A Captor Develops A Deep Bond With Their Victim

jorge - - illustrative purposes only

We’ve all heard of Stockholm syndrome, where a victim develops a positive connection with their captor.

But most people are probably in the dark about Stockholm syndrome’s lesser-known opposite, Lima syndrome.

In Lima syndrome, a captor will develop a bond with their victim. When this psychological response happens, they may become empathetic to their victim’s circumstances.

There isn’t much information on Lima syndrome that’s available, but one example of it can be found in a hostage situation that took place in Lima, Peru, which is how the phenomenon got its name.

The history behind Lima syndrome began in late 1996 when several guests in attendance at a party hosted by the Japanese ambassador were captured and held hostage.

Many of the party guests were top government officials, high-level diplomats, and business executives.

They were captured by members of the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement (MTRA), a socialist group that demanded the release of MTRA prisoners. During the first month of the hostage crisis, more than half of the hostages were let go.

The reason for this seemed to be that the captors had started to feel sympathetic toward their victims.

The response came to be known as Lima syndrome. Its effects made it less likely that the hostages would be harmed and increased the chances of their escape.

jorge – – illustrative purposes only

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