Report: At least 153 people arrested under special powers have died in Salvadoran prisons
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) — At least 153 people jailed since El Salvador instituted emergency powers in March 2022 to confront the country's powerful street gangs have died in state custody, according to a report released Monday by the human rights group Cristosal.
None of those who died had been convicted of a crime they were accused of at the time of their arrest.
There were four women among the victims and the rest were men.
The deaths were the result of torture and systematic and serious injuries, the report said.
Nearly half of the victims suffered violent deaths.
Some of the deaths showed signs they resulted from deliberate denial of medical assistance, medicine and food, including some deaths resulting from malnutrition.
The deaths revealed punitive policies carried out by guards and prison officials.
The report stated that such actions would have required authorisation and backing by the highest-level security officials.
The government has not provided an official count of deaths among the incarcerated.
The special powers approved by El Salvador's Legislative Assembly in March 2022 following a surge in gang violence suspend some fundamental rights, such informing someone of their rights at the time of arrest and the reason for their, as well as having access to a lawyer.
Follow The Gleaner on Twitter and Instagram @JamaicaGleaner and on Facebook @GleanerJamaica. Send us a message on WhatsApp at 1-876-499-0169 or email us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.