Chilling photos show the first hardcore gangbangers moved into a new mega-prison in El Salvador that President Nayib Bukele has boasted is “impossible to escape.”
Snaps from inside the Center for the Confinement of Terrorism — built by El Salvadoran officials hellbent on winning their war against violent street gangs — show heavily tattooed, barefoot and stripped-down inmates chained and kneeling shoulder to shoulder as heavily armed guards tower over them, according to the BBC.
The prisoners are forced to crouch down with their hands behind their heads while chained inside the massive facility, which authorities claim is the largest in the Americas.
“Today at dawn, in a single operation, we transferred the first 2,000 gang members to the Center for the Confinement of Terrorism,” Bukele posted on Twitter on Friday.
“This will be their new house, where they will live for decades, mixed up, unable to do any more harm to the population,” he wrote.
The prison, which is in Tecoluca, about 46 miles from the Central American country’s capital of San Salvador, will eventually house as many as 40,000 inmates in eight buildings, each with 32 cells that will hold about 100 prisoners each, the BBC reported.
Each cell has only two sinks and two toilets.
The new prison is part of Bukele’s controversial war on gangs, launched last year.
The initiative has raised concerns among human-rights observers who have complained that the campaign violates basic constitutional rights, including by allowing security forces to arrest suspects without a warrant.
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To date, more than 64,000 suspected gang members have been rounded up, including those allegedly belonging to the notoriously violent MS-13 and Barrio-18 gangs.
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