The Guatemalan government, through Interior Ministers David Napoleon Periandos and Defense Minister Henri Yovani Reyes Sigua, reported on the steps they are taking to prevent gang members from entering El Salvador. Fighting the Maras is the exception.
Authorities say at least three Guatemalan families living along the border with El Salvador have been threatened by gang members seeking to rent their homes in the area, but so far in the presence of police and the military.
At the press conference, Presidential Secretary for Social Affairs Kevin Lopez Oliva said the preventive coordination measures of the Interior Ministry and the Guatemalan Ministry of Defense had developed a comprehensive strategic action plan for border security. Coordinated between the National Civil Police and the Army in the border area between Guatemala and El Salvador.
Minister Periandos said the plan was designed to protect the borders in view of the exceptional rule that has been put in place in El Salvador.
He pointed out that the government has implemented checkpoints and strengthened border security and is present on all formal routes between the two countries and on existing blind steps.
He said they had visited the site with First Deputy Minister Carlos Enrique Franco Ursua to verify the existence and effectiveness of the measures taken in collaboration with the Ministry of National Defense.
He confirmed that the project is scheduled to be developed for a month from March 28 and that is why it will end on April 28.
Minister Periandos said the plan had already yielded some results and that three Guatemalan families living along the border with El Salvador had been threatened by gangs from that country and that they were being hired because of the authorities’ patrols. , Necessarily, their property or they are going to remove them from the buildings.
He pointed out that they had reserves and routes on the highways and routes in the border area and were visiting the communities living in the area so that they were aware of the threats coming to the comrades. In addition, the total number of guards in the area was increased to 500.
Periandos pointed out that the police and army were staying in the area and that “the Guatemalan people have been assured by their authorities that you will be protected.” That presence, as I repeat, was enormous and massive, and created an atmosphere of peace and security in the region, ”said Minister Periandos.
When asked about the results so far of the border security plan, Periandos said he had caught a man who was fully identified as a member of a gang that responded to the name of 41-year-old Eric Florentino Castro Vasquez. Placed in the possession of the Salvadoran authorities.
Also, 12 people who entered the country illegally this week have been handed over to the Directorate General of Migration as part of the migration process.
He pointed out that the arrest and surrender of this gang member in Guatemala territory meant that the Salvatore gang members were aware of the encirclement of Guatemalan power and would not allow them to pass.
Protection for tourists in Salvador
The plan, which strengthens security along the border, includes blocking the entry of gang members and providing security for tourists coming to Guatemala during the holy week.
“Due to the large police and military presence in the area, we believe security operations and checkpoints and borders have been successful so far. Visits are permanent, surveillance is stable and we will change our plan when the situation changes. Until now we have been very calm that they will, ”said Periandos.
He pointed out that on the border between El Salvador and Honduras, 20 checkpoints have been set up to allow tourists to arrive next week, to be completely safe and to prevent gangs from leaving El Salvador and taking refuge in this country. .
The defense minister said he was in control of the border at the national level and that in support of the interior ministry they had increased the military presence on the borders of both Honduras and El Salvador.
It is on the border with that country, he said, that it has been greatly strengthened because of the exceptional rule established in it.
He confirmed that the Third Infantry, located in the Judea area, had directly increased its forces by 200 troops along the Valle Nuevo and San Cristóbal borders and had strengthened patrols along the Honduras and El Salvador border. Gangs through numerous blind alleys in the area.
He said they, along with the National Civil Police, stay at the legal border checkpoints day and night.
For Holy Week, a plan has already been prepared by the National Civil Police, in which approximately 25,000 agents of the company will be involved throughout the National Territory and on all routes to the National Detention Organization camps on Easter (Synapris).