Relatives mourn next a crime scene where four people were killed by unknown gumen at Arturo Quezada neighborhood, in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, May 15, 2016. REUTERS/Jorge Cabrera
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A common sight on any street corner in the poor neighborhoods of El Salvador's capital is a teenage gang member controlling territory by standing guard with a mobile phone in hand, checking people and cars that enter and leave. Gang violence has plagued El Salvador for decades with entire city districts controlled by the two most powerful gangs – Barrio 18 and its rival Mara Salvatrucha – who use sexual violence, extortion and death threats to cement their grip over the scared communities.To find better ways of responding to floods, earthquakes, armed violence, migration and other problems in cities, a Global Alliance for Urban Crises will be launched at the summit, bringing together U.N. agencies, international aid groups, the private sector and researchers.Organized crime gangs can have hidden effects on aid work, for example by providing construction materials for anti-flood levees or pushing people to back certain projects.With low- and middle-income countries estimated to host 95 percent of future urban expansion, much of it rapid and unplanned, aid agencies will increasingly be required to respond to crises in cities, said Pamela Sitko, a technical adviser on managing urban disasters with World Vision International.
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