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  • People travelling on a public transport bus in San Salvador, El Salvador. September 9, 2020.

    People travelling on a public transport bus in San Salvador, El Salvador. September 9, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 14 September 2020
Opinion

The Ciusnahuat Indigenous women have been demonstrating against the construction of a mall in a park located in traditional and ancestral community territory. The building project threatens wildlife and the natural water source that provides the locals.

El Salvador's Permanent Bureau for Risk Management (MPGR) on Monday denounced police repression against indigenous women in the Cuisnahuat municipality, in the Sonsonate department.

The Ciusnahuat Indigenous women have been demonstrating against the construction of a mall in a park located in traditional and ancestral community territory. The building project threatens wildlife and the natural water source that provides the locals.

"The last act of violence against the demonstrating group, made up mostly of indigenous women, which is still at the entrance to the market, occurred on September 10, 2020, when the national Civil Police (PNC) attacked one of its members for the sole reason of carrying a folder to protect them from the sun and rain. In response to this situation, the rest of the women defended their partner, resulting in the act of violence," the institution said.

The construction detractors were in a not violent sit in, carrying signs and manifesting their discontent with the project, when the police officers attacked them. 

The peaceful demonstrators claimed that the mayor of Cuisnahuat did not consult the community about the mall construction and had the edification permits in advance. The mayor also pledged to dialogue with the community but failed to comply with it.

The MPGR stressed that violent repression was disproportionate and said that the demonstrators are entitled to protest and to protect their territory and natural patrimony.   

"Because of the recurrent aggressions by the Body of Metropolitan Agents and the National Civil Police that constitute violations of the human rights of this population, the intervention of the Attorney General's Office of the Republic is urgent, as well as the different State ministries in charge of ensuring their protection," MPGR concluded.

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