INTRODUCTION: Violence in the troubled Latin American country of El Salvador continued last week with bomb attacks in the capital and a pitched battle with left-wing guerrillas in a northern province.
SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR (VISNEWS - CARLOS ROSAS)
GV Bomb damaged bank in San Salvador
CU Bomb crater and rubble
GV Bomb damaged hotel in San Salvador
CU Rubble and debris inside hotel. (2 SHOTS)
GV Outside of hotel
GV Bomb damaged shopping centre and CU same of shopping centre. (3 SHOTS)
SVs bombed out interior of shopping centre. (4 SHOTS)
GV Bombed branch of San Salvadorean Bank
SVs Wreckage of bank. (3 SHOTS)
SV Bomb wreckage in road
Background: INTRODUCTION: Violence in the troubled Latin American country of El Salvador continued last week with bomb attacks in the capital and a pitched battle with left-wing guerrillas in a northern province. Four bombs exploded in the commercial sector of San Salvador on Friday (23 October) while government troops fought insurgents on the banks of the river Lempa, about 80 kilometres (50 miles) north of the capital.
SYNOPSIS: Banks, like this one in Sal Salvador, and the offices of multi-national companies have become traditional targets for bomb attacks by left-wing guerrillas. The country's security services have become so stretched by the virtual civil war that even the commercial sector of the capital is not immune to attack. The bank was almost completely destroyed in the blast.
A nearby hotel was also devastated by a bomb. The guerrillas aim would appear to be to disrupt all commercial activity in San Salvador much as they have done in the rest of the country. These latest bomb attacks on the capital came just two weeks after the country's Defence Minister, Colonel Jose Guillermo Garcia vowed to stamp out guerrilla activity for good.
The large Beethoven shopping centre was also a target for the bombers who detonated a bomb during the early hours before the store filled with shoppers. Much of the interior of the centre was destroyed in the blast. Despite crushing a full scale guerrilla-led revolt in January the government of President Jose Napoleon Duarte has been unable to subdue armed resistance in the country.
The day's fourth blast was at another bank, in downtown San Salvador. Again the damage was extensive with debris blown out into the street. The series of explosions is further proof that the guerrillas of the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front, a coalition of five left-wing groups, continues to be active in the capital despite considerable military aid for the government from the United States.
InitialsJS Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved