Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/27/2012 (3 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Peace plane initiated by former guerrilla fighter and Catholic bishop

Criminal youth gangs run rife in El Salvador - it's estimated that at least 60,000 young people belong to gangs or "maras." These groups offer a sense of belonging to counter the lack of education and employment offered there. Gang leaders have now initiated a bold plan to end violence among the warring factions there. 

The maras offer a sense of belonging to counter the lack of education and employment offered in El Salvador.

The maras offer a sense of belonging to counter the lack of education and employment offered in El Salvador.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/27/2012 (3 years ago)

Published in Americas

Keywords: El Salvador, peace plan, youth gangs, ceasefire, cities, unemployment


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Salvadoran youth gangs have accepted a proposal to declare 10 municipalities free of violence. It's seen as a highly bold move as mistrust runs rampant among the neighborhood gangs here. 

"We want to eradicate all illegal activities and have a better relationship with the community," Carlos Mojica, gang leader of one of the two factions of the Barrio 18 gang tells IPS.

The two men behind this initiative are former guerrilla fighter Raúl Mijango and Catholic bishop Fabio Colindres. The proposal was accepted earlier this month by the leaders of the Barrio 18 and Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13), the two main gangs in El Salvador. Smaller groups like Máquina, Mao Mao and Mirada Locos have since picked up the torch.

El Salvador's population is set at 6.2 million people. Unemployment stands at 10.7 percent among young people between the ages of 16 and 29, 6.1 percentage points higher than the rate among economically active people over 30.

Maras in local organized crime has grown to the point that the U.S. Treasury Department officially designated the MS-13 a transnational criminal organization.

Under the new initiative, the members of the maras promised not to commit crimes in 10 violence-ridden municipalities. They also intend to hand their guns over to the authorities to prove that their intentions are sincere.

Once crime rates go down in the 10 districts in question, the idea would be to expand the plan to other cities, and eventually, across the country.

The names of the 10 municipalities have not yet been revealed to the government or the media, apparently to avoid putting media pressure on the local authorities in those districts.

"We want to gradually put an end to some things, but it can't be done on a large scale, because others parts of society aren't ready to do it yet," Borromeo Henríquez one of the heads of the Mara Salvatrucha gang says.

Under the proposal, the gangs would work with non-governmental organizations, churches, the center-left government of Mauricio Funes, and local mayors, to create the conditions necessary for the social reinsertion of gang members.

A version of this story was first published by Inter Press Service news agency.

.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2015 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for February 2016
Universal:
That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity.
Evangelization: That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community.



Comments


More Americas

FULL SCHEDULE: Pope Francis' itinerary to Mexico Watch

Image of The Mexican trip by the pontiff will address immigration issues, as well as violence stemming from the country's drug cartels.

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The full itinerary for Pope Francis' visit to Mexico in February of next year has been announced. The trip by the pontiff will address immigration issues, as well as violence stemming from the country's drug cartels. While in Mexico, Pope Francis will celebrate ... continue reading


Pray for Pope Francis' safety: Mexican gangs target priests Watch

Image of Mexico's gangs target priests and nuns who interfere with human rights violations (AP).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Please pray for the safety of not only Pope Francis, but also for the priests and nuns targeted in Mexico. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the Catholic Multimedia Center, Mexico has remained the most dangerous country for priests in Latin America for ... continue reading


Pope Francis' greeting to journalists during flight from Rome to Cuba (FULL TEXT: English) Watch

Image of

By Libreria Editrice Vaticana

APOSTOLIC JOURNEY OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS IN MEXICO WITH PARK IN LA HABANA TO MATCH WITH SS KIRILL, PATRIARCH OF MOSCOW AND ALL RUSSIA (12-18 February 2016) Father LombardiHoly Father, welcome among us, as always, at the beginning of these beautiful intercontinental ... continue reading


Please join us in prayer: Zika epidemic in Colombia infects THOUSANDS of pregnant women Watch

Image of Zika continues to spread without signs of slowing (AFP).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Reports of Zika's spread have been pouring in at clinics and hospitals around Colombia. Sadly, nearly 32,000 pregnant women have tested positive for the potentially devastating virus. Please join us in a short prayer for healing. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - On ... continue reading


Slain Mexican baby becomes symbol for nation's neverending gang violence Watch

Image of Grim photographs of this slain Mexican family have circulated widely on social media site (Facebook).

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

An overwhelming tragedy - the random killing of a seven-month-old baby boy - has been galvanized into a symbol of Mexico's rampant gang violence. Little Marcus Migeul Pano Colon, captured in photographs lying down in a city street riddled with bullets has been widely ... continue reading


HUMAN SACRIFICE: Ancient Peruvian tomb yields bodies of six women killed in rituals Watch

Image of Researchers say that the skeletal remains found at a temple were once part of the Lambayeque culture. Photo courtesy of Museo Tumblas Reales de Sipan.

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Archaeologists have uncovered grisly evidence of 1,200-year-old sacrificial rituals in Pre-Inca Peru. The skeletons of six females have been discovered on the former site of a temple. The women's murders were believed ritualistic in nature as their bodies were ... continue reading


Soldiers going 'door to door' to combat deadly Zika virus in Brazil Watch

Image of The Zika virus is linked to microcephaly, where children are born with freakishly small heads. (Getty Images)

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The mosquito-borne Zika virus has spread rapidly throughout Brazil. The virus is linked to the birth defect microcephaly, which causes babies to be born with smaller than normal heads, along with brain damage. The Brazilian government has sent more than 200,000 ... continue reading


Over 7,000 refugees to arrive in America within the next few days Watch

Image of Cuban migrants cross into Texas to reach freedoms promised in America (AP).

By Monique Crawford (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Thousands of Cuban refugees seek freedom in the United States by traveling through Central America and crossing the Mexico-Texas border. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Over 7,000 Cuban refugees are expected to illegally cross the Mexican border into the United ... continue reading


You'll never guess what was found in El Chapo's weapon cache! Watch

Image of One type of weapon discovered in El Chapo's cache has the power to down a helicopter (exploding helicopter.blogspot).

By Monique Crawford (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Authorities discovered a .50 caliber rifle among a massive weapons cache at Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán's Mexican hideout. The rifle is so powerful, it can shoot a helicopter from the sky. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Following the recapture of El Chapo, a ... continue reading


Award-winning news station, Al Jazeera America goes belly-up as the price of oil plunges Watch

Image of Al Jazeera America must close its doors as it finds itself unable to keep up in an increasingly digital world (Al Jazeera America).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Award-winning news station Al Jazeera America has won several awards including Best Documentary at the International Emmy Awards and Best Show or Series at the News, Cablefax Digital Awards, but the renowned station is forced to close shop. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


All Americas News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 58:1-9
1 Shout for all you are worth, do not hold back, raise your voice like a ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 51:3-4, 5-6, 18-19
3 For I am well aware of my offences, my sin is constantly in ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 9:14-15
14 Then John's disciples came to him and said, 'Why is it that we and the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for February 12th, 2016 Image

St. Buonfiglio Monaldo
February 12: He was one of seven Florentines who had joined ... Read More