UN blames El Salvador atrocities on military

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The Independent Online
NEW YORK (AP) - El Salvador's armed forces committed most of the atrocities in the 12-year civil war that ended in January last year, according to a report by a United Nations-appointed 'truth commission', published yesterday. Most of the 75,000 people killed in the war were, it said, civilians suspected of left-wing leanings.

The commission called for the immediate removal of all military officers cited in the report for human rights violations, and said they should all be barred from political office for at least 10 years.

The Salvadorean President, Alfredo Cristiani, rejected a US deadline of one week to purge the military of 15 officers accused of human rights abuses in exchange for dollars 11m (pounds 7.7m) in aid. He also called for an immediate general amnesty. Ferman Cienfuegos, a member of the political commission of the former rebels' organisation, the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN), rejected the proposal, saying: 'First we must apply the recommendations and later discuss the possibility of an amnesty.'