[QODLink]
Americas

Ex-rebel sworn in as El Salvador president

Salvador Sanchez Ceren, a former schoolteacher turned rebel commander, is sworn in to lead Central American nation.

Last updated: 02 Jun 2014 02:12
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Salvador Sanchez Ceren is the fourth former leftist rebel to be elected president in Latin America [AFP]

Rural schoolteacher turned rebel commander Salvador Sanchez Ceren has been sworn in as president of El Salvador.

Sanchez Ceren, 69, promised to govern "with honesty, austerity, efficiency and transparency" at the inauguration ceremony on Sunday attended by leaders from 13 countries.

"After long years of fighting for justice and democracy in my country, I receive the presidential sash with humility and profound respect, with a commitment to exercise the presidency for all Salvadorans," he said.

Sanchez Ceren belonged to the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) and rose to become one of the rebel group's top commanders, under the nom de guerre Leonel Gonzalez, during the country's bloody 1979-1992 civil war.

He was elected president on March 9, defeating the conservative Nationalist Republican Alliance (ARENA) party candidate Norman Quijano by less than a quarter of a percentage point.

In doing so, he became the fourth former leftist rebel leader to be elected president in Latin America after Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua, Jose Mujica in Uruguay, and Dilma Rousseff in Brazil.

Sanchez Ceren succeeded Mauricio Funes, a former journalist whose FMLN government in 2009 ended two decades of conservative rule, mostly under ARENA. Sanchez Ceren was Funes's vice president. 

He inherits a country beset by violent gangs and poverty, which affects 40 percent of the population of the tiny Central American country.

221

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Featured
Pro-Russia leaders' election in Ukraine's east shows bloody conflict is far from a peaceful resolution.
Critics challenge Canberra's move to refuse visas for West Africans in Ebola-besieged countries.
A key issue for Hispanics is the estimated 11.3 million immigrants in the US without papers who face deportation.
In 1970, only two mosques existed in the country, but now more than 200 offer sanctuary to Japan's Muslims.
Hundreds of the country's reporters eke out a living by finding news - then burying it for a price.