SAN SALVADOR: More than 29,000 people have been murdered in El Salvador in the last seven years, although the rate of killings has dropped in the past year, according to a non-governmental organization.
The Fundacion Guillermo Manuel Ungo (Fundaungo) said Wednesday that some 27,000 people were killed between 2005 and 2011 while less than 2,000 were killed between January and August of this year.
The most highly targeted group was men aged 15-29, but more than 3,000 women had also been killed since 2005, the group said.
Central America has seen a spike in crime as Mexico's powerful cartels have gradually expanded south, but El Salvador has seen a drop in violence since its two most notorious homegrown gangs agreed to a truce in March.
The daily homicide rate has dropped from 14 to 5.5 since the March truce between the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) and Barrio 18 gangs, though experts have cautioned the calm may not last.