Press "Enter" to skip to content

El Salvador warns Mexico of fleeing gang members after mass arrests

Tapachula, Chiapas — The mayor of Santa Ana says Mexico needs to be on the alert for the possible arrival of El Salvador gang members. Mayor Gustavo Acevedo made the warning to Mexico Friday after numerous operations and arrests in his country.

Gustavo says that after several operations that have lead to the arrests of Mara Salvatrucha gang members in his country, some of them have fled to neighboring countries such as Honduras or Guatemala, where they have also been detained.

He is not ruling out that these gang members could also seek refuge in Mexico. Specifically, Gustavo has asked Roda Irene Urbina, the mayor of Tapachula, Chiapas, to reinforce security in her area due to the possibility of their arrival.

The South American country of El Salvador is under a state of emergency at the request of President Nayib Bukele, a measure that has brought criticism from international organizations.

On March 27, the Legislative Assembly of El Salvador approved the emergency regime for one month at the request of President Nayib Bukele in an attempt to stop the actions of the Mara Salvatrucha gang, who are alleged responsible for at least 76 homicides in two days.

The regime consists of the deployment of more soldiers and police officers on streets who will now operate protected by a legal package that expands their margin of action, which will allow for more arrests.

In addition to this extraordinary measure, the Legislative Assembly also approved the toughening of sentences for gang members and endorsed trying adolescents as adults.

International organizations have criticized the decision by Congress, at the request of Bukele and without any study or parliamentary discussion, the altering of several constitutional rights including defense during a judicial process and the inviolability of telecommunications.

More than 8,000 alleged gang members have been captured in El Salvador within the framework of the emergency regime, which was decreed due to an escalation of murders that left more than 80 dead, as reported by the president Friday.