Weekly Report - 20 January 2022 (WR-22-03)

EL SALVADOR: Bukele intent on silencing critics

Imperfect they may be but El Salvador’s 1992 peace accords have been officially commemorated on 16 January for 30 years for bringing an end to a brutal and bloody 12-year civil war, ushering in democracy and the rule of law, and removing the armed forces from politics. No longer. President Nayib Bukele’s ruling Nuevas Ideas (NI) used its dominance of congress this week to approve a decree expunging the official day of commemoration from the statutes. Bukele faced criticism for seeking to negate history. But perhaps even more concerning are clear signs that he is intent on negating criticism after the publication of an investigation revealing extensive use of the now-infamous Pegasus spyware to target critics, especially journalists from the online investigative publication El Faro.

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