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El Salvador

Why Salvadorian Teens Join Brutal Gangs and How Courts Makes Things Worse

Why Salvadorian Teens Join Brutal Gangs and How Courts Makes Things Worse

Q24N – There were 30 murders in El Salvador on March 15 in El Salvador. Just on March 15. Afterward, Justice and Security Minister Mauricio Ramírez Landaverde came out saying the country will have to face some rough days and hard times if it is ever going to win against the country’s widespread problem with violence. […]

El Salvador’s ‘Black Widows’ and the Growing Sophistication of the MS13

El Salvador’s ‘Black Widows’ and the Growing Sophistication of the MS13

Q24N (Insightcrime.org) Authorities in El Salvador dismantled a MS13 network allegedly dedicated to forcing women into marriages before assassinating the husband to collect insurance money, a scheme that speaks to the gang’s growing business sophistication. Three women, who are allegedly members of a MS13 structure dubbed “Black Widows,” were arrested on February 24 and given pre-trial […]

El Salvador to Extend ‘Extraordinary’ Anti-Gang Measures until 2018

El Salvador to Extend ‘Extraordinary’ Anti-Gang Measures until 2018

Q24N (InSight Crime) Officials in El Salvador agreed to extend “extraordinary measures” to fight organized crime despite doubts about their effectiveness and alleged threats to citizens’ rights, raising questions about the motives for the government’s decision. The Commission for Public Security and the Fight against Drug-Trafficking (Comisión de Seguridad Pública y Combate a la Narcoactividad) […]

540 Children were Murdered Last Year in El Salvador: Report

540 Children were Murdered Last Year in El Salvador: Report

Q24N (via Insightcrime.org) A recent police report in El Salvador shows that an average of 1.5 children were murdered every day last year, an illustration of how an intense gang conflict and generalized violence are impacting the country’s youngest and most vulnerable populations. The 540 murders of minors in El Salvador last year accounted for […]

San Salvador’s Controversial “Millenial Mayor” Wages War Against The Press

San Salvador’s Controversial “Millenial Mayor” Wages War Against The Press

(Q24N) Nayib Bukele is the mayor of San Salvador, the capital of El Salvador. He won the position in 2015 on the official party ticket, the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), after being mayor of Nueva San Salvador, a small municipality on the outskirts of the capital. Bukele, whom many say will be the next […]

El Salvador Records A Day Without Homicides in 2 Years

El Salvador Records A Day Without Homicides in 2 Years

Q24N / NBC News – El Salvador, one of the world’s more dangerous countries, has recorded a rare day without a single homicide — a possible dividend of the recent truce between warring gangs. There were no reported murders Wednesday, National Civil Police commissioner Howard Cotto told reporters. The last time the country went a […]

The Extraordinary Hell Of El Salvador’s Gang Prisons

The Extraordinary Hell Of El Salvador’s Gang Prisons

(Q24N,  via Insightcrime.org) A plague of fungal skin diseases, untreated deadly infections, constant threats of tuberculosis epidemics, people fed with their own hands, extreme overcrowding and children locked up with their mothers. This is what the human rights observers reported during the first few months of the extraordinary measures implemented across prisons for El Salvador’s […]

Stolen Guns Fuel El Salvador Black Market for Arms

Stolen Guns Fuel El Salvador Black Market for Arms

Q24N – Insightcrime.org – More than four guns were stolen every day in El Salvador over the last six years, according to a new report that highlights one of the sources of black market weapons in the violence-wracked country. Between 2010 and October 2016 in El Salvador, 11,229 guns were reported stolen, reported La Prensa […]

Alleged MS13 Members in El Salvador Caught Selling Illicit Horse Meat

Alleged MS13 Members in El Salvador Caught Selling Illicit Horse Meat

Q24N NEWS (Insightcrime.org)  Authorities in El Salvador have arrested 39 alleged members of the MS13 for planning to sell 5,600 pounds of contraband horse meat, a potential sign of the gang’s increasing sophistication as it seeks to diversify its criminal revenue streams. Police conducted the raid on the morning of November 15 in the municipality […]

El Salvador Arrests Ex-President Elías Saca over Money Laundering Charges

El Salvador Arrests Ex-President Elías Saca over Money Laundering Charges

(Q24N) Ex-President of El Salvador Elias Antonio Saca (2004-2009) was arrested during the wedding of his oldest son Sunday, October 30 on charges of money laundering and illicit enrichment, among other things. Later, the authorities reported two other arrests had been made regarding the Saca administration: Former Secretary of Communications Julio Rank and former Secretary […]

Government of El Salvador Has Run Out of Money

Government of El Salvador Has Run Out of Money

Q24N – A state of emergency has been declared and pressure has been put on the Assembly to approve borrowing in the order of US$1.2 billion in order to honor short-term debts. President Sanchez Ceren announced as a first step a declaratory emergency, so that before the close of 2016 they can ‘attend to, discuss […]

Official Data Suggests El Salvador Police Kill with Impunity

Official Data Suggests El Salvador Police Kill with Impunity

Q24N (Insightcrime.org) – El Salvador’s armed forces and the National Civil Police (PNC) are killing alleged gang members at a rate of about 35 per month since the government declared war on the country’s gangs in January 2015. Security officials justify the killings as confrontations that “conform to the law.” But a detailed analysis of […]

El Salvador: Warning of Imperial Offensive in Latin America

(Prensa Latina) The ambassador of Nicaragua, Gilda Bolt, the Venezuelan diplomat Antonio Núñez and Cuban analyst Roberto Regalado, today delivered a presentation on ”the imperial offensive” at the Sixth Congress of the Salvadoran Movement of Solidarity with Cuba. At the meeting, held yesterday in the city of San Miguel, they warned about the US plan […]

El Salvador Ex-President Leaves Country Amid Corruption Probe

El Salvador Ex-President Leaves Country Amid Corruption Probe

Former President Mauricio Funes has reportedly left El Salvador on business as authorities raid properties in search for evidence he committed acts of corruption while in office, a case likely to test the new attorney general’s resolve to combat impunity for high-level politicians. On August 17, El Salvador’s Attorney General’s Office raided seven properties belonging […]

How to Solve El Salvador’s Security Crisis? A Modest Proposal

How to Solve El Salvador’s Security Crisis? A Modest Proposal

(Q24N) El Salvador is the most violent peacetime nation in the world, seemingly stuck in a perpetual cycle of gang hostilities and truculent police behavior. A new security approach could quell inflamed tensions, and just might lower the country’s elevated homicide rate — for good this time. “We’re at war.” The blunt declaration made by […]

El Salvador: Inside The Prison That Guards Are Too Afraid To Enter

El Salvador: Inside The Prison That Guards Are Too Afraid To Enter

The Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, is arguably the most notorious street gang in the Western Hemisphere. They are so feared in El Salvador with a reputation for merciless revenge and cruel retribution, that they’ve been allowed to run their own prison – the Penas Ciudad Barrios. “Penas Ciudad Barrios is a maximum security prison for members […]

Central America Officials Raise Alert Over Cross-border Gang Movements

Central America Officials Raise Alert Over Cross-border Gang Movements

(Q24N) El Salvador officials have warned of gang members fleeing into neighboring countries to escape the pressure of security forces. But is this a serious threat or simply a convenient method for officials to tout the “successes” of hardline security measures? Salvadoran Security Minister Mauricio Ramírez Landaverde has alerted Central American police forces that gang […]

He Survived 2 Murder Attempts in One Day

He Survived 2 Murder Attempts in One Day

(Q24N) TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras — Two days in a hospital bed, recovering from painful gunshot wounds in either leg, have given ample time for the renowned Honduran radio journalist Félix Molina to reflect. Strange as it may seem now, dressed in a hospital gown, with a policeman standing guard outside the door, Molina recalled how this […]

State of Emergency Declared in El Salvador

State of Emergency Declared in El Salvador

Q24N (Prensa Latina) Salvadoran President Salvador Sanchez Ceren declared the national state of emergency Thursday, because of the crisis with drinkable water, which has been sharpened, by climatic changes, population density and infrastructure problems. Sanchez Ceren announced a group of special measures at the same time in order to prevent and solve the lack of […]

El Salvador Decrees Emergency in 7 Prisons, Targets Gang Leaders

El Salvador Decrees Emergency in 7 Prisons, Targets Gang Leaders

Q24N (AP) El Salvador authorities declared a state of emergency Tuesday at seven prisons and transferred 299 high-ranking gang members at the start of “extraordinary measures” that El Salvador’s government has promised to take against gangs. A package of additional measures was to be presented to the legislature Wednesday. Mauricio Ramirez Landaverde, the minister of […]

El Salvador, World’s New Murder Capital

El Salvador, World’s New Murder Capital

(Q24N) Social violence. War. Last year, 6,657 murders. Between January 1 and February 21 of this year, 1,622 murders. An average of 23 Salvadorans assassinated every day during 2016, as confirmed recently by Howard Augusto Cotto, the director of the National Civil Police (PNC). The victims can be gang members or the neighbor who sells […]

El Salvador Youths Choose Fighting Fires Over Gang Life: Report

El Salvador Youths Choose Fighting Fires Over Gang Life: Report

(Q24N) A Wall Street Journal report documents how youths in El Salvador are choosing to become firefighters in order to avoid gang life, a unique case that may nonetheless contain important lessons about preventing violence in the world’s new murder capital. In a special report, the the Wall Street Journal talked talked with several youths […]

El Salvador Joins SOUTHCOM Radar System to Combat Drug Trafficking

El Salvador Joins SOUTHCOM Radar System to Combat Drug Trafficking

(Q24N) To improve the exchange of information that facilitates aerial counter-narcotics operations, El Salvador integrated its air traffic control radars into the U.S. Southern Command’s (SOUTHCOM) Cooperative Situational Information Integration System (CSII). The integration became official with the signing of an agreement between El Salvador’s Autonomous Executive Port Commission (CEPA) and the United States through […]

‘3 to 4’ Gun Battles a Day: El Salvador Police Chief

‘3 to 4’ Gun Battles a Day: El Salvador Police Chief

(Q24N) El Salvador police reported that there have been close to 100 gun battles between security forces and street gangs in 2016, signaling a continued increase in violence in what is beginning to resemble a low-intensity civil war. At a graduation for police sergeants, National Civil Police (Policía Nacional Civil – PNC) Chief Howard Cotto […]

Women Inmates Sow Hope in Prisons in El Salvador

Women Inmates Sow Hope in Prisons in El Salvador

Q24N – IZALCO, El Salvador (IPS) – Doris Zabala squats down in the field to pull up radishes. She is working on a prison farm in El Salvador, where more and more penitentiaries are incorporating agricultural work and other activities to keep prisoners busy. “The harvest has been good – nice, big red radishes,” Zabala […]

Jailed for Miscarriage, Women Reveal the Cost of Criminalizing Abortion

Jailed for Miscarriage, Women Reveal the Cost of Criminalizing Abortion

Q24N- Maria Teresa Rivera didn’t know she was pregnant until the November morning four years ago when she suffered a miscarriage. She was rushed to the hospital after her mother-in-law found her collapsed and bleeding on the floor. But after receiving medication, Rivera was handcuffed and detained by the police when a health worker accused […]

Why are There No Gangs in Berlin, El Salvador?

Why are There No Gangs in Berlin, El Salvador?

Q24N (Insightcrime.org) – Berlin is not one of those municipalities often presented as a territory immune to El Salvador’s gang phenomenon. Berlin has more than 17,000 residents and is nestled in one of the most violent zones in the country, but over the past decade its homicide rate has been closer to that of Costa […]