The El Salvador Congress repealed a law Wednesday that criminalizes the dissemination of gang messages through media as the ruling party leaders announced their success in the campaign against gangs.In 2022, the Legislative Assembly of El Salvador passed a regulation stipulating that a person who reproduced or disseminated messages from gangs, including news media, may be sentenced to ten to fifteen years in prison. Several international organizations and countries claimed the regulation violated freedom of speech. According to the United States Government, “the law lends itself to attempts to censor the media, prevent reporting on corruption and other matters of public interest, and silence critics of the Salvadoran government.”  However, legislator Caleb Navarro defended the regulation, stating that the country was at war against gangs at the time they issued the regulations and that violent acts were committed by criminal groups that put the lives, safety and integrity of people at risk.The Legislative Assembly, with 73 votes, repealed the second paragraph of Article 345-C of the Penal Code, which criminalized the publishing of messages generated by gangs. In the plenary session, the Law for the Prohibition of Maras, Gangs, Groups, Associations, and Organizations of a Criminal Nature was reformed to decriminalize the dissemination of messages created by gangs in media as well.

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