Posts Tagged ‘El Salvador’

Migration crisis has not ended but has been moved to Mexico, study shows

Monday, June 15th, 2015

[Translation of an article from El Faro of San Salvador, El Salvador, for June 11, 2015. See original here.]

The wave of migration that generated a humanitarian crisis last year on the southern border of the United States has not stopped but has moved to the south of Mexico, according to a study released last Thursday by the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA).

In the first seven months of the 2015 fiscal year (from October, 2014, to April, 2015), Mexico has detained more Central American citizens than the United States itself, indicating that the country is acting as a retaining wall to the wave of migration, according to experts in that organization.

During that period, the United States detained 70,440 Central Americans as they were trying to enter the country, but Mexico arrested 92,889 under the same conditions, according to official data from the National Institute on Migration of Mexico and Customs and Border Protection of the United States. (more…)

The consolidation of the Latin American Left

Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

[Translation of an article from Carta Maior of São Paulo, Brazil, for October 29, 2014. See original here and related articles here and here.]

by Emir Sader

There has been much talk recently of an eventual end to the cycle of progressive government in Latin America. Real difficulties in countries like Venezuela and Argentina, added to a slowing of the pace of expansion of the region’s economies, have fed these speculations.

This year’s electoral calendar could be a test of the vigor of these governments. The year began with the inauguration of Michele Bachelet in Chile, who defeated Sebastián Piñera. Soon afterward, the Frente Farabundo Martí elected the president of El Salvador. In October Evo Morales was re-elected in the first round of voting. Now Dilma is re-elected and Tabaré Vázquez’s performance in the first round has made him the favorite for continuation of Frente Amplio administrations in Uruguay. (more…)

El Salvador: The army pressures Funes

Sunday, November 10th, 2013

Entrevista Canal 15[Translation of an editorial from El Faro of San Salvador for October 27, 2013. See original here and related articles here and here.]

David Munguía Payés made his way into President Funes’ inner circle with two promises: to guarantee the army’s peacefulness and obedience to the country’s first leftist government in history and to protect it from the FMLN, with whom it kept up a test of strength over power.

Funes increased the defense budget and General Munguía Payés renovated the motor pool and improved conditions for the troops. He took control of the high command and broadened the range of military functions taken on after the end of the armed conflict.

So he placed the military in national intelligence, in police intelligence and in police management after his move into the Ministry of Public Safety, which he also militarized. Then he negotiated with the gangs in a controversial process, all with President Funes’ approval. Until the Supreme Court removed him from Public Safety and, even so, Funes gave him back his post in Defense, where he is currently operating. (more…)

El Salvador: More than 40 women jailed for abortion

Monday, September 16th, 2013

Some 129 women tried and 49 sent to prison for unintentional abortions

[Translation of an article from ContraPunto of San Salvador for September 13, 2013. See original here and related articles here and here.]

By Gloria Morán

Cristina Quintanilla is a 27-year-old woman who in 2004 had the misfortune of going from the hospital to the jail. She was charged with having inflicted on herself an abortion when she was five months pregnant. Cristina says that she did not cause it and that almost ten years later she still does not know why she lost her child.

“I was pregnant. I was with my partner. I was happy. All I have left are the little clothes because I was excited about celebrating my baby shower. But I lost my baby on October 26, 2004. I was dying of anguish, I was repeating to myself, ‘My god, I think it is enough that I lost my baby, but now they are trying to charge me with something that never was,’” the young mother of two said. (more…)

El Salvador: Time for a debate on abortion, feminist Morena Herrera says

Friday, June 7th, 2013

aborto[Translation of an article from ContraPunto of San Salvador for June 4, 2013. See original here and related articles here, here,  here and here.]

San Salvador – For more than two months, the feminist movement of El Salvador has conducted an intense campaign in favor of therapeutic abortion as a human right, specifically in the case of “Beatriz,” and a right in the women’s healthcare system.

The case of Beatriz is symbolic of what happens to hundreds of women in El Salvador. If there were a law that allowed at least therapeutic abortion, injustices and assaults against the lives of many women would end.

According to the Agrupación Ciudadana, there are more than 30 women in El Salvador sentenced to 30 years in prison for the crime of aggravated homicide when what they have experienced are spontaneous abortions. (more…)

El Salvador: New evidence shows links between army and paramilitary

Saturday, May 25th, 2013


((Ricardo Castrorrivas looks at a photo of his daughter Carminda -- La Jornada photo by Edgardo Ayala))

((Ricardo Castrorrivas looks at a photo of his daughter Carminda — La Jornada photo by Edgardo Ayala))

Recently found army document lists names of leftists to be pursued or assassinated

[Translation of an article from La Jornada of Mexico City for May 24, 2013. See original here.]

San Salvador, May 23 — A confidential Salvadoran army document from the 1980s could be the missing link confirming involvement of the armed forces in activities of the death squads during the civil war, including torture and forced disappearances.

The Yellow Book, as it is titled on the cover, is a report apparently written by the Estado Mayor Conjunto de las Fuerzas Armadas (EMCFA – Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces), the army’s elite operations unit, whose initials can be clearly seen printed on each of the 270 pages of the document, confirming its official nature. (more…)

El Salvador: Mining companies want their share

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Environmental contamination and sickness are the result of years of mining in La Unión

[Translation of an article from ContraPunto of El Salvador for April 13, 2013. See original here.]

By Gerardo Arbaiza

San Salvador – In the extreme east of the country, in the canton of San Sebastián in the Santa Rosa de Lima municipality of La Unión, is a good example of extreme neglect by government authorities, despite its being beside the most profitable gold mine in the country, a mine worked from 1968 to the beginning of the ‘80s by the United States company Commerce Group, from which a total of seven billion dollars is said to have been extracted, from which no benefit for the community is to be seen.

The list of tribulations in San Sebastián is long: the sulphurous color of the water in the San Sebastián River extends a depressing welcome to a community that, its inhabitants say, is visited by officials only when legislative and mayoral candidates are looking for votes. The acidity of this water (pH between four and five) makes it impossible to drink, comments Cidia Cortez, a researcher with the Centro de Investigación sobre Inversión y Comercio (CEICOM – Center for Research into Investment and Commerce). (more…)

El Salvador: Roberto Cañas optimistic about ending impunity

Saturday, March 30th, 2013

canas[Translation of an article from ContraPunto of San Salvador for March 25, 2013. See original here. Long-time activist Roberto Cañas was a signatory to the peace accords of 1992 that marked the end of the 12-year civil war in El Salvador.]

By David Ernesto Pérez

San Salvador – Once the civil war was over, the Truth Commission was installed in El Salvador for the purpose of investigating hundreds of massacres, summary executions and disappearances. On March 15, 1993, the group submitted to the United Nations a report concluding that 85 percent of the crimes committed in the conflict were the responsibility of the armed forces.

On the same day that the members of the Truth Commission – Belisario Betancur, Thomas Buergenthal and Reinaldo Figueredo Planchart – submitted the results of their investigation, which had taken more than six months, then President Alfredo Cristiani Burkard of the ARENA party [Alianza Republicana Nacionalista] was promoting the implementation of an “immediate amnesty.” (more…)

El Salvador: Maquiladoras, women and reform

Friday, August 10th, 2012


((ContraPunto photo))

There are currently 81,000 maquiladora workers in the country

[Translation of an article from ContraPunto of San Salvador for July 30, 2012. See original here.]

by Gloria Morán

San Salvador – She is a 43-year-old woman and she has worked in a maquiladora making clothing in San Marcos, San Salvador, for eight years. During that time her routine has been to get up at 4:00 in the morning. She is Marta (a fictitious name), she lives in Apopa and it takes her an hour to get to the factory.

Marta is the single mother of three girls, 19, 13 and ten years of age, which makes her situation more difficult. For the past eight years she has had to get up early to make breakfast and lunch for herself and her daughters. Her salary is 187.40 dollars a month, minus the deductions required by law. (more…)

El Salvador: Leading feminist interviewed on relations with the government and the party

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012


((Morena Herrera – ContraPunto photo))

Morena Herrera charges FMLN has more interest in government positions than in social change

[Abridged translation of an article from ContraPunto of San Salvador for May 28, 2012. See original here and related articles here and here.]

by Gerardo Arbaiza

San Salvador – Morena Herrera, founder of the emblematic feminist organization Las Dignas and of the Colectiva Feminista para el Desarrollo Local, speaks with authority on the outlook for the social Left in El Salvador 20 years after the end of the armed conflict this small nation lived through from 1980 to 1992.

Herrera, who was also a guerrilla fighter, considers the feminist movement to have had a very hard struggle adapting at certain specific junctures due to the diverse opinions and the constant debate within the movement.

Herrera states that despite this diversity of opinions, an effort has been made to join together in a position of independence in the face of resolute adherence to the party. (more…)

El Salvador: Vice president accuses Funes of ignoring the interests of the FMLN

Friday, April 20th, 2012


((Muricio Funes, Salvador Sánchez Cerén))

[Translation of an article from El Faro of San Salvador for April 16, 2012. See original here.]

by Jimena Aguilar

Shortly before the third anniversary of the first Frente Farabundo Martí para la Liberación Nacional government, Vice President Salvador Sánchez Cerén on Monday made statements concerning the administration to which he was elected in 2009, admitting that the administration has failed to comply with what it offered the voters and holding President Mauricio Funes responsible for this. “The country still believes that change is not possible because it has not seen any,” he told journalists in an impromptu press conference in the Legislative Assembly.

Sánchez Cerén, one of the three top leaders of the leftist party, appeared as an opponent in his first public statements dissenting from Funes, declaring that the failure of the government to comply is because the president has not concerned himself with supporting what suits the party that put him in power. (more…)

Elections in El Salvador: Social aspirin

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

[Translation of a column from ContraPunto of San Salvador for March 8. See original here.]

By Armando Salazar

San Salvador – While capital looks upon the elections as the continuation of its hegemony and its business deals, resulting in the renewal of functionaries who would “improve and perfect” institutions, reality and history have demonstrated that, so far, elections have reproduced an establishment that generates opulence and impunity as well as extensive poverty, exclusion and institutional offense.

The left, inserted into electoral political life since 1992, has little by little taken more institutional positions in mayoralties (96), legislatures (41%) and a contentious presidential election won in alliance with other sectors, which has allowed it to control some government functions. (more…)