President of El Salvador issues apology for massacre
The Americas Post - President Funes placed flowers at the monument to civilians killed in El Mazote
Salvadoran President Mauricio Funes on Monday apologized for the massacre of 936 civilians in the town of El Mazote during a 1981 army counterinsurgency operation. He acknowledged the government’s responsibility for the killings and referred to the operation as “the largest massacre of civilians in the contemporary history of Latin America.”
Government soldiers entered El Mazote on Dec. 11, 1981, in search of rebels and supporters. Over the course of three days the troops killed anyone they could catch, including women, children and babies.
Mr. Funes’ speech marked the 20th anniversary of the 1992 peace agreement that ended that country’s 12-year civil war. He also requested forgiveness from relatives of approximately 12,000 victims who disappeared during the conflict, which cost 75,000 lives.
A former journalist, President Funes was elected in 2009 as the candidate of the FMLN, the party of the former leftist guerrilla movement.