Honduran gangs to announce truce to cut violence

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Associated Press

Posted on May 24, 2013 at 8:36 PM

Updated Saturday, May 25 at 3:00 AM

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (AP) — A Roman Catholic bishop says Honduras' two largest and most-violent gangs will sign a truce on Tuesday.

Monsignor Romulo Emiliani says the gangs will apologize to the public and ask for dialogue with the government and police to start changing from their gang lifestyle.

Emiliani spoke to The Associated Press on Friday. He said the Mara Salvatrucha and 18th Street need government help to stop charging protection fees to finance their war with each other. He said prisons from which many gang leaders operate must be turned into rehabilitation centers.

Honduras has the highest murder rate in the world, according to U.N. figures.

Leaders of the same two gangs in El Salvador signed a truce in March 2012. Since then, Salvadoran authorities say homicides have dropped 52 percent.

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