The president of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, announced on Sunday (05.28.2023) an offensive against the rest of the members of the violent gangs that continue to operate and that twelve days ago murdered a policeman.
“Although we are decisively winning the GangWar, we will launch an offensive against the remnants of these structures” illegal, said the ruler on his Twitter account.
On May 16, members of one of these groups assassinated agent Maximino Vásquez, forcing the authorities to implement a military siege that led to the capture of several gang members accused of their alleged participation in the crime.
This Sunday, the President @nayibbukele is meeting with the Security Cabinet.
Although we are decisively winning the #GuerraContraPandillas, we will launch an offensive against the remnants of these structures, to prevent any attempt at regrouping, as… pic.twitter.com/Z6ExP6WK7F
— Presidential House ðŸ‡¸ðŸ‡» (@PresidenciaSV) May 28,
Following the assassination, Bukele ordered a siege with 5,000 soldiers and 500 police officers in the city of Nueva Concepcion, population 30,000, in the department of Chalatenango, some 80 km north of the capital San Salvador
The objective of this offensive is “to avoid any attempt at regrouping, as was happening in Nueva Concepción,” he pointed out.
Salvadoran authorities maintain a “war” against gangs under an emergency regime that was originally declared by parliament, at the request of Bukele, in response to a homicidal escalation that claimed the lives of 87 people, from March 25 to 27, 2022.
They have since been detained 68,720 suspected gang members, although some 5,000 have been released for not being linked to these gangs, according to the government.
The crusade against gangs has the support of nine out of ten Salvadorans, according to polls, but human rights organizations and the Catholic Church have criticized Bukele's methods.