El Salvador’s feared gangs extend truce to schools
Quezaltepeque.- El Salvador’s powerful gangs or Maras have pledged to end the forceful recruitment of young people and declared schools to be “zones of peace” in an unprecedented move linked to a March truce.
“We hereby declare the abolition of all forms of involuntary recruitment of minors and adults,” said Victor Antonio Garcia, leader of the Mara-18 gang, at a press conference at the jail where he is being held outside San Salvador.
The Mara Salvatrucha, the country’s other main crime syndicate, has also agreed to the move. The two gangs have some 32,000 members — 10,000 of them in prison — engaged in illicit trades like drugs and extortion.
The two gangs are known for being especially violent, and largely account for the tiny Central American country’s soaring homicide rate, high even by the standards of a region gripped by drug violence.
Since the announcement of the truce the average daily homicide rate in El Salvador has dropped from 14 to five, according to police.
You may be interested
Court rejects tax reform and asks legislators to eliminate four pointsLuis Fernando Cascante / Semanario Universidad - October 17, 2018
Costa Rica's Plenary Court has rejected the proposed tax reform bill in its current state and asked the members of…
30 protesters released from prison in NicaraguaAFP / The Tico Times - October 17, 2018
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega freed 30 political opponents on Monday, an action greeted with relief by human rights organizations. They…
La Sele continues to struggle, falls to Colombia, 3-1Alejandro Zúñiga - October 17, 2018
One of La Sele’s shining moments happened right there, at the Red Bull Arena, a little over a year ago.…