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HomeLatest NewsThe largest prison in the world is inaugurated in El Salvador

The largest prison in the world is inaugurated in El Salvador

Date: April 1, 2023 Time: 16:53:38

This “state house” is a whole complex of eight buildings.


The largest prison in the world has opened in El Salvador. The official name of the giant penitentiary is the Center to Combat Terrorism.

Treasury for decades!

President Nayib Bukele announced its opening on Twitter with a great video.

“Today at dawn, in one fell swoop, we transferred 2,000 gang members to the Center for the Fight against Terrorism. Here will be their new home, where they will live for decades, all mixed together, unable to harm the population any further. We continue…”

This “state house” is a whole complex of eight buildings. In each – 32 cells of a hundred square meters, a “shelter” for more than a hundred prisoners. Amenities include a pair of sinks and a pair of toilets. The center is equipped with the latest leak prevention technology.

Why was such a giant prison needed for a small Latin American country with a population of only about 6.5 million people?


El Salvador is called hell on earth, the most dangerous, mafia, gangster, criminal country on the planet. In 2015, according to statistics, it had the highest homicide rate in the world: 104 corpses per 100,000 inhabitants.

The problem is that the country was divided by armed street gangs. The largest is Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13). Ant Brigade of the Army of El Salvador. It was created in the 80s by Salvadoran migrants in Los Angeles. With a good goal, it seems, to fight against the raids of the local street gangs of African Americans, Latinos. But the boys got involved. Gradually, the squad became one of the most brutal and numerous crime syndicates in Central and North America. He is active in the US, Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala and in his homeland of El Salvador. According to the FBI, the number of Mara Salvatrucha is from 50 to 80 thousand people, of which around 10 to 15 thousand operate in the States, mainly in Los Angeles and New York. This is the first street gang that US federal authorities have recognized as a “transnational criminal organization.” President Trump even called the Mara Salvatrucha one of the main threats to the United States and its members “animals”. Him vowing to destroy the gang during his reign. But he didn’t keep his word.

The only thing that US law enforcement has achieved since the end of the last century is the mass expulsion of the members of the Mara Salvatrucha to their historic homeland. This was the beginning of the popularization of the gang in El Salvador. But here it became crueler and bloodier, crushing entire urban areas under its control. Following the model of the Mara Salvatrucha, other gangs began to appear in the country. No wonder Salvadorans blame the United States for their problems.

“Black Widows”

Gangs are involved in the trafficking of drugs, weapons, and people; robbery, extortion, hitmen, kidnapping for ransom, pimping, car theft, money laundering, fraud, etc. Many street vendors and small shops pay up to half of their income to work. If you don’t pay, they kill you! Many Salvadorans living in the United States also pay tribute, whose relatives, if they refuse, will be mutilated or killed by bandits in their homeland.

They also kill those who help the police, pass information to a rival group. Bloody wars between street gangs increase death statistics.

Gangs don’t just control neighborhoods. They determine the basics of life: how young people should dress, where children can study, what music can be played at full volume, until what time to drink alcohol, etc.

In addition to traditional areas of criminal business, Salvadoran gangs devise new, sometimes bloody criminal schemes. For example, seven members of the Black Widows group of the Mara Salvatrucha received between 15 and 30 years for… “forcing the marriage”. What is hidden behind this mysterious wording?

The female leader drove around the bars in a luxury car, met respectable men and entered into a sexual relationship with them. After several dates, she told her “beloved of hers” that she had a niece who had immigration status that allowed her to live in the United States. This status also applies to the spouse. The niece, they say, is ready for a fictitious wedding. Many men fell for it in order to officially move to the United States. The role of the “niece” was played by the victim of the bandits, who was forced to marry an unknown man by means of beatings, sexual violence, death threats to relatives in case of refusal. After the wedding, the “wife” had to convince the “husband” to insure her life in a bank for 15-30 thousand dollars so that their marriage union was complete and they could safely leave for America. A few weeks later, the “husband” was killed. The burial “wives” had to sob, portraying heartbroken widows, so that nothing prevented the insurance payment.

The “widow” received insurance from the bank and handed it over to the bandits at the exit. Some unfortunates were killed after completing the task, so as not to chat.

Women gang members are also forced to raise children of criminal partners who are behind bars. The girls are forced to visit jailed bandits disguised as their wives to sexually please them on dates.

“The Coolest Dictator in the Universe”

The authorities in El Salvador repeatedly tried to defeat the street gangs, but were not very successful. The situation changed in June 2019, when 38-year-old Nayib Bukele assumed the presidency. He went to the polls with the slogan of ending banditry and corruption. After he took office, he immediately launched his Territorial Control Plan, sending reinforced police and military units to the most criminogenic areas. He cleared the courts, the police, the army of elements associated with bandits. When the deputies delayed the allocation of funds to strengthen the forces of public order, he raided the parliament with a group of military …

Yes, act in the fight against crime, without looking back at democratic procedures. No wonder he tweeted himself “The coolest dictator in the universe.” But he managed to reduce the number of murders per 100,000 inhabitants from 104 to 19 cases.

On March 27, gangs defied the president, killing 62 people in one day. Hoping, as under previous authorities, to paralyze the country, cause chaos and force the president to retire. They didn’t attack him! Bukele introduced a state of emergency in the country, declared a real war on the Salvadoran gangs. Bandits began to be arrested in batches, without waiting for a warrant. The courts massively hand down sentences from 10-15 years to 40-45! The age of criminal responsibility for children accused of crimes related to belonging to “terrorist groups or any other criminal group” has been lowered from 16 to 12 years. Now the minions of bandits from 12 to 16 years old can safely give “chervonets”. And for adolescents over 16 years old – a full “twenty”. This deals a heavy blow to the tribe of young bandits, who find themselves on the wings of adult thugs.

More than 64,000 people were detained during Bukele’s war with the gangs. It is true that human rights activists say that this “war” restricts the constitutional rights of citizens, sometimes innocent people who are not associated with gangs suffer. But the people, tired of rampant crime, support their president. And he has no intention of retiring. Prisons in El Salvador are overcrowded. That is why he took the largest “state house” in the world.


Ostrog Island

Before the Salvadoran “state house”, the American Rikers, located on the island of the same name in New York, was considered the largest prison in the world. It is designed for 14,000 prisoners, 7,000 law enforcement officers and 1,500 civil service personnel. It costs US taxpayers $860 million a year. The area of ​​the island-fortress is 1.67 square km. Until 2005, there were separate blocks for inmates with a non-traditional sexual orientation. But “to reinforce security”, the special blocks for “blue” and “pink” were closed.

Famous Rikers prisoners include rapper Tupac Shakur, John Lennon’s killer Mark Chapman, serial killer David Berkowitz and others.

In 1965, Salvador Dali promised the prisoners to give a lecture on art, but for some reason it did not come. He sent me a drawing instead. He hung in a prison in the most conspicuous place. In 2003, three employees stole the drawing and replaced it with a fake. The original has not yet been found. There were many other high-profile scandals at Rikers involving violations by guards and management. The New York City Council voted to close the prison by 2026. New prisons for local inmates will be built in Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Manhattan. Closing Rikers and building new prisons is estimated at $8 billion.

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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