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Weekly Report - 03 October 2019 (WR-19-39)

EL SALVADOR: Old enemies unite against Bukele

To say that relations are strained between El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele and the country’s legislative assembly would be an understatement. Bukele has next to no support in the 84-seat body. But rather than making overtures to the right-wing Alianza Republicana Nacionalista (Arena) and left-wing Frente Farabundo Martí para la Liberación Nacional (FMLN), which dominate the assembly, he has censured them in equal measure, relying on his popular support to pressure deputies when necessary. This has led to the unusual sight of Arena and FMLN deputies speaking with one voice: they accused Bukele of bypassing the assembly by issuing a presidential decree to establish an international commission against impunity and corruption in El Salvador (Cicies); and dismissed his speech to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) as vapid and vainglorious.

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