Les gangs d'Amérique centrale

Les présidents des différents pays d'Amérique centrale se sont récemment rencontrés à Tegucigalpa, au Honduras, pour mettre au point une politique commune face aux gangs urbains qui prolifèrent dans la région. Le président hondurien, Ricardo Maduro, qui a été élu en faisant campagne sur le thème de la tolérance zéro a résumé ainsi leur position commune : "Les gangs se sont internationalisés et nous allons avoir la main lourde, très lourde pour leur répondre".

Le problème des gangs d'adolescents en Amérique centrale n'est pas nouveau. Ils constituent un problème au Salvador depuis la fin des années 1980, ils sont apparus au Guatémala et au Honduras entre 1990 et 1995. Depuis, le nombre de leurs membres a décuplé.

La plupart des observateurs expliquent leur croissance par les guerres civiles prolongées qui ont ravagé l'Amérique centrale durant les années 1980 et par la politique d'expulsion de l'Amérique. Mais cette théorie ne reflète pas les réalités locales. Le Honduras, pays le plus touché par le problème des gangs, n'a jamais connu de guerre civile. Le Nicaragua et le Mexique qui reçoivent beaucoup de personnes expulsées par les USA sont moins touchés par les gangs que le Salvador ou le Guatémala.

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