Human rights commission asks El Salvador for records

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SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) — The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights asked El Salvador on Saturday to turn over records related to the country’s civil war to the courts and victims of alleged human rights abuses.

In a preliminary report following a recent visit to the country, the commission also requested that missing or destroyed documents from the period be reconstructed.

Defense Ministry officials told the human rights commission that there are no records detailing who was in charge of military operations during the 12-year conflict, which claimed more than 75,000 lives.

Of particular interest are records related to the 1981 El Mozote massacre, in which 989 civilians were killed. Salvadoran Judge Jorge Alberto Guzmán, who is in charge of the investigation into that massacre, ordered President Nayib Bukele in November to deliver all the military files related to the El Mozote killings.

The killings were allegedly perpetrated by soldiers seeking to root out guerrilla forces during the country’s civil war. Bodies were found torched inside a church, and forensic scientists uncovered 136 skeletons of children in one mass grave in the community.

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