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El Salvador was labeled as on of the most violent countries in the western hemisphere. This stigma was relinquished in March of this year, when t… Read More
El Salvador was labeled as on of the most violent countries in the western hemisphere. This stigma was relinquished in March of this year, when the unexpected news of a truce between the two major gangs Mara Salvatrucha (MS) and Barrio 18 was announced. This peace accord came from a dialogue between the church and government with gang leaders whom are serving long jail sentences in the overcrowded prisons of El Salvador. There was a lot of uncertainty about this agreement, which meant that the two gangs or “MARAS” would lessen their crime activity, especially homicides. Since then homicides have been reduced to about 60%, to an average of 5 homicides per day compared to 13 before the truce. Although this is a good condition for the Salvadoran peoples, there is still consternation about the violence and gangs in the country. Throughout the truce crimes related to gang activity have continued to happen, some due to non-payment of extortions, random killings of teenage students and others for not complying with the gang leaders orders of the truce. The occurrence of the disappeared have increase, according to Legal Medicine records show about 1000 disappears since this pact between the gangs started and mass graves have been unearth with bodies of persons believed to be victims of the violence generated by the gangs. The truce continues and the country is mourning less but will it be forever. Read Less
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Truce In & Out

El Salvadro was labeled as on of the most violent countries in the westernhemisphere. This stigma was relinquished in March of this year, when theunexpected news of a truce between the two major gangs Mara Salvatrucha (MS)and Barrio 18 was announced. This peace accord came from a dialogue between thechurch and government with gang leaders whom are serving long jail sentences inthe overcrowded prisons of El Salvador. Therewas a lot of uncertainty about this agreement, which meant that the two gangsor “MARAS” would lessen their crime activity, especially homicides. Since then homicides have been reduced to about60%, to an average of 5 homicides per day compared to 13 before the truce. Although this is a good condition for theSalvadoran peoples, there is still consternation about the violence and gangsin the country. Throughout the truce crimes related to gang activity havecontinued to happen, some due to non-payment of extortions, random killings ofteenage students and others for not complying with the gang leaders orders ofthe truce. The occurrence of the disappeared have increase, according to LegalMedicine records show about 1000 disappears since this pact between the gangsstarted and mass graves have been unearth with bodies of persons believed to bevictims of the violence generated by the gangs. The truce continues and the country is mourning less but will it be forever.
 
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Salvadorans go about their day and hope that the country will soon be safer.
 Members of the Barrio 18 gang in the Cojutepeque prison.
A black ribbon hanging from the main entrance to the Centroamericana high school where 5 students went missing and later found dead in a mass grave.
The truce came for a dialogue betweent the gang leaders which are all serving long sentneces in the overcrowded prisons of El Salvador.
A forensic team member labels the decomposed body for evidence, after the excavation of a mass grave where a couple of bodies were found. Mass graves is a way for criminals to hide their victims which are later through intensive investigation and tips from the local community.
In March of this year  unexpected news ofa truce between the two major gangs Mara Salvatrucha (MS) and Barrio 18 wasannounced.
Members of the Mara Salvatrucha (MS) play soccer inside the Ciudad Barrios prison.
Just recently the Salvadoran government acknowledge that they had approached Bishop Colindres and Mr. Mijango to dialogue with the gang leaders on a possible truce.  Since the beginning of the truce the president Funes had denied any involvement in the process but accepted credit for the decrease of homicides from 13 to 5 per day.
A police officer looks for bullet shells at a crime scene where tow person were assassinated.
A gang member carries a couple of sacs containing weapons as a symbolic gesture to surrender weapons to the OEA (Organization of the American States) general secretary Jose Miguel Insulza during his visit to overlook the process of the truce.
A woman mourns the death of her loved ones in a poor working-class neighborhood in the capital city of San Salvador.
Blood stan at a crime scene,  homicides have been reduced 60% from 13 to 5 per day, but this number os daily homicides still is troubling for a society.
Gang member who have decided to abandoned the gang life.
Many individuals are victims of extortions which are common in the country. Many gangs extort businesses and households.
According to Legal Medicine records show about1000 disappears since the truce between the gangs started.
The truce continues and the country is mourning less but will it be forever.
The Anti-Gang Unit  was created in order to combat the gangs in the country.
Bishop Fabio Colindres (far right) and former guerrilla commander Raul Mijango (far left, blue shrit) are the mediators between the government and the gangs. They are responsible for beginning the dialogue which brought the truce between the two major gangs.
Throughout the truce crimes related to gang activityhave continued to happen, some due to non-payment of extortions, randomkillings of teenage students and for other reasons.
There is a lot of uncertainty about the truce,which means that the two gangs or “MARAS” would lessen their crime activity,especially homicides.
Police continue to stay alert to prevent gang activity.
Most of the neighborhoods and communities in the country are controlled by gangs.