viernes, 10 de mayo de 2013

El Salvador prosecutor denounces gangs' "false" truce

El Salvador's chief prosecutor (Fiscal-general) Luis Martínez qualified as "false" and non-existent on 8 May the year-long truce agreed on by the Mara street gangs, accusing them of pursuing their violent activities and apparently contradicting officials' assertions that the truce had reduced crime. Martínez told the press in San Salvador that the truce "has never existed" as the victims cited in the press were members of the public, not "these lazy gangsters who only steal, extort and murder," Agence France-Presse reported. The agency observed that the comments followed authorities' recognition that violent crime had recently risen in El Salvador: Police registered "more than" 45 homicides "in the first few days" of May, El Salvador's Dario Co Latino reported on 9 May, and authorities suspected gangs were involved in some or most of these including the recent killing of a family of four in Zacatecoluca, south-east of San Salvador. "Criminal, violent, merciless...actions are the cause of social violence" and cause "pain, grief and bankruptcy" to Salvadorean families, he said. The Justice and Security Minister David Munguía however was reported as telling an interview or programme on 7 or 8 May that violent crime had several causes including "social violence." The Security Ministry stated on its website on 9 May that the rise in homicides in early May did not constitute a trend. The Minister attended on 8 or 9 May the inclusion of a ninth district in El Salvador - Nueva Concepción - among districts declared free of violent crime as part of the gang truce; the government was to spend 33 million USD in these districts to re-integrate gang members into civilian life, El Salvador's Diario Co Latino reported. On 9 May the Justice and Security Ministry stated on its website that April was the least violent month since the Maras' truce began in March 2012, with police counting 144 homicides compared to 156 in April 2012. It added that in the first four months of 2013 there were 695 homicides, compared to 1,225 counted for the same period in 2012.