El Salvador is certainly one of my top destinations in Latin America, due to the many marvels that this country has to offer but also because of the kindness and generosity of its inhabitants.
Unfortunately, the country still has a negative image internationally, due to the country’s problems regarding violence and corruption.
Indeed, in between the period of the civil war that occurred during 1979 and 1992 and the current gang issues, El Salvador’s homicide rate has drastically increased. It is currently the highest in the world for a country that is not in open war. This is problematic for the economy and the development of tourism.
In order to make this beautiful country a safer place, soldiers, policemen, special forces and people working for private security companies do their best to protect Salvadorans.
Below are photographs of these people, of whom Salvadorans can be proud.
Always with his shotgun in hand, this security agent is protecting a truck that is distributing beverages to different tiendas. Santa Tecla, El Salvador.
Police officers during their break, San Salvador, El Salvador.
Mario Alberto is a veteran from the civil war of El Salvador. He was fighting for the military-led government of El Salvador against the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN). After being shot in the leg during the conflict, he never entirely recovered from his injury and had to leave the army. He is now ensuring the security of a hotel in San Miguel, El Salvador.
During the civil war, Chepe was a guerreros fighting in Perquin, the headquarters of the FMLN. It was in these hills that the opposition garnered its most loyal supporters, and despite vigorous bombing campaigns, the military was unable to dislodge the guerrilla forces. Chepe is now ensuring the security of the Museum of the Revolution located in the same city, where he fought most of his life.
CAMST member (Cuerpo de Agentes Metropolitanos de Santa Tecla) on his way to a search in a barrio of Santa Tecla, El Salvador.
Member of the STP in front of a Penitentiary center in San Miguel, El Salvador.
Soldiers in their basement ensuring the security at the border with Honduras. Department of Morazan, El Salvador.
Security Guards working on Christmas Day in the open Market of San Miguel, El Salvador.
Men working for a private security company maintaining order in front of a fast food restaurant in San Miguel, El Salvador.
Text and photos by Aurélien Ernst