HomeNewsBriefIs El Salvador's New President Burying the Gang Truce?
BRIEF

Is El Salvador's New President Burying the Gang Truce?

EL SALVADOR / 11 JUN 2014 BY MIMI YAGOUB EN

El Salvador's new President Salvador Sanchez Ceren has declared he will not "make a truce with organized crime," in comments that will dent the hopes of those looking to revive the 2012 gang truce.

On June 10, President Sanchez Ceren -- who was sworn in on June 1 -- said his government would "combat insecurity, combat extortion, work to prevent murders; we will not make a truce with organized crime," reported EFE.

The president added that during his five-year term he would "make legitimate use of state force," but only as a "last resort and not as the immediate solution to social conflict." On previous occasions, he has also made it clear that the gang truce is not a priority for his administration.  

Justice and Security Minister Benito Lara has also confirmed that the gang truce would not be part of the new government's security policy, although he added that the state would not interfere if the gangs reach an agreement on their own.

InSight Crime Analysis

In 2012, the government of President Mauricio Funes facilitated a truce between El Salvador's most powerful gangs, in part by moving gang leaders into medium-security prisons and providing other benefits in exchange for lowering the homicide rate.

Over the past year, however, an uptick in murders has prompted both the Church and the national police to warn that the pact has fallen apart, and in May 2014 Funes stated the truce had failed.

SEE ALSO: El Salvador's Gang Truce

Nevertheless, with a new government there have been new attempts to revive the pact, and the country's gangs have appealed directly to the new government to maintain the truce, stating in an official communication that "the historic opportunity to recover peace that began on March 9, 2012 remains open."

Although the new government's comments may have disheartened supporters of the gang truce, the rhetoric may not correspond with actual policies. In spite of its role in facilitating the truce, the Funes administration maintained that it had not negotiated with the gangs, but simply "accompanied" the process, and tried to publicly distance itself from the pact. In spite of recent statements, it remains possible that Sanchez Ceren's government will end up employing a similar tactic.    

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

BARRIO 18 / 16 FEB 2016

Contradictory testimony surrounding the death of four alleged gang members at the hands of police again focuses attention on alleged…

BELIZE / 28 SEP 2011

This report outlines a series of actions by the U.S. government in order to face violence in Central America.

BARRIO 18 / 2 OCT 2015

The structure and operations of El Salvador's Barrio 18 street gang increasingly resemble that of a corporation. Government investigations reveal…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Tackles Illegal Fishing

15 OCT 2021

In October, InSight Crime and American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) began a year-long project on illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing in…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Featured in Handbook for Reporting on Organized Crime

8 OCT 2021

In late September, the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN) published an excerpt of its forthcoming guide on reporting organized crime in Indonesia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Probing Organized Crime in Haiti

1 OCT 2021

InSight Crime has made it a priority to investigate organized crime in Haiti, where an impotent state is reeling after the July assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, coupled with an…

THE ORGANIZATION

Emergency First Aid in Hostile Environments

24 SEP 2021

At InSight Crime's annual treat, we ramped up hostile environment and emergency first aid training for our 40-member staff, many of whom conduct on-the-ground investigations in dangerous corners of the region.

THE ORGANIZATION

Series on Environmental Crime in the Amazon Generates Headlines

17 SEP 2021

InSight Crime and the Igarapé Institute have been delighted at the response to our joint investigation into environmental crimes in the Colombian Amazon. Coverage of our chapters dedicated to illegal mining…