El Salvador: March rejects ongoing violence and calls for a culture of peace

. . DEMOCRATIC PARTICIPATION . .

An article from La Prensa Grafica (translated by CPNN and reprinted as a non-commercial service)

Various educational institutions in the municipality of Sonsonate held a march for peace and for the rejection of violence, intended to raise awareness among people to improve the situation of social harmony. Dozens of students from the Thomas Jefferson National Institute and the Polytechnic Institute of Sonsonate gathered outside city hall, carrying banners calling for the cessation of violence. The students were accompanied by cheerleaders, who to the tune of the music offered a show to the public along the route of the peace march.

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The youth group marched down North 1st Avenue, crossed the street and then took Salarrué Morazan avenue, until they reached the December 14 column.

According to organizers, the march was organized to mark the International Day of Non-Violence.

Sonsonate was in previous years one of the 16 most violent municipalities of the department; however, they have implemented some plans that have significantly reduced the rate of violence. According to statistics from the National Civil Police (PNC), the municipality of Sonsonate ceased to occupy the first place in homicides and has dropped to fifth place, with 26 murders so far this year, compared to 35 last year.

PNC statistics situate Izalco as the more violent than the department of Sonsonate, with 114 homicides so far this year; followed by Nahuizalco, 41; San Julian, 32; Armenia, with 30, and Sonsonate, 26.

Local authorities say the reduction of violence in the departmental capital is due to a number of programs in Sonsonate made by various institutions, with the support of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

The intention of those involved in these programs is to improve relationships between children and young people of school age and therefore several of its projects are focused on schools.

(Click here for a Spanish version of this article)

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