In El Salvador sixteen people were killed in a gun-battle on Thursday (17 July) when government security forces discovered the headquarters of a left-wing guerrilla group in the capital, Sau Salvador.
GV PAN Armed civilians running along road through university campus in San Salvador, el Salvador
SV PULL BACK TO LV Troops search area around steps
CU Dead policeman lying on ground
SV Armed civilians with troops searching
SV & CU Bullet ridden bodies of two people in fields (3 shots)
SV PAN Slogan painted on wall
LV & CU Bodies of three men inside building. Bodies clutching weapons (6 shots)
SV PAN Slogan and wall behind bottles and cans of ink
CU Body of man clutching pistol (3 shots)
SV & CU Soldiers, including some in vehicles, searching civilians (3 shots)
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Background: In El Salvador sixteen people were killed in a gun-battle on Thursday (17 July) when government security forces discovered the headquarters of a left-wing guerrilla group in the capital, Sau Salvador. Many of the victims, who included women and children, were caught in the cross-five between the guerrillas and security forces.
SYNOPSIS: The gun battle started near the University when the authorities found left-wing printing press.
Troops and police have carried out major searches of civilian areas in and around the capital following the escalation of violence between left-win and right-wing death squads which have left more than two thousand people dead so far this year.
As the shoot-out developed there were casualties on both sides.
Many of the dead were civilians caught in the cross-fire between guerrillas and the security forces. El Salvador's ruling junta is struggling to cope with the increasingly frequent outbreaks of violence which threaten to plunge the country into civil war.
After penetrating the building police destroyed the presses. Inside the group's headquarters they found the bullet-ridden bodies of three men who still clutched their weapons where they had fallen.
The gun-battle was only one incident the police had to contend with on Thursday. On the same night a bomb damaged the front of the Nicaraguan Embassy in San Salvador, and more than two hundred peasants were continuing to occupy the Costa Rican embassy after taking over the mission a week before.
Reports of further violence have also filtered through from the countryside surrounding the capital and there have been an increasing number of vicious murders carried out by political death squads.