El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras form anti-gang force
Collectively, there were 17,422 murders in the three countries last year and the homicide rate in each nation is topped only by countries engulfed in war. Photograph: (Getty)
Presidents of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras have announced the formation of a joint force to combat gangs and organised crime groups that have made their countries among the most dangerous in the world.
The initiative by the three Central American presidents will begin to be implemented in September, Salvadoran President Salvador S?nchez Cer?n told a news conference after a meeting with his counterparts in his capital city.
A joint team of police and soldiers from the three countries will patrol the border areas to check arms and drug smuggling, and also the movement of criminals and gang members, he said.
The nations, together known as the Northern Triangle, are plagued by gangs dealing in murder, extortion and drugs. Collectively, there were 17,422 murders in the three countries last year and the homicide rate in each nation is topped only by countries engulfed in war.
S?nchez Cer?n, Guatemala's Jimmy Morales and Honduras’ Juan Orlando Hernandez also agreed to keep exchanging intelligence on criminal groups and to speed the arrest and extradition between their countries of wanted suspects.
"We are fighting for the most fundamental of human rights, the right to life, the right to liberty, the right to enjoy the fruits one one`s honest labours," Hernandez said.