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El Salvador families demand justice in past crimes by rebels

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) — Relatives of people killed by guerrillas during El Salvador's 1980-1992 civil war demanded Friday that prosecutors investigate some former leftist rebels for crimes against humanity.

El Salvador's armed forces committed the majority of the killings and disappearances, and relatives have long demanded trials for former army officers. But in an unprecedented act, a group of relatives demanded investigations of both sides in the conflict.

The demands involved alleged victims of two of the five rebel factions that made up the Farabundo Marti National Liberation front, known as the FMLN. Following peace accords, the FMLN became a political party and governed El Salvador for a decade until last year.

Relatives of a total of seven victims went to federal prosecutors' offices Friday to demand justice for five victims of the armed forces and two people allegedly killed by rebels. Rosario Acosta is a former FMLN guerrilla movement member who says his father and uncle were killed by one of the rebel factions, purportedly because they were suspected of being infiltrators or enemies of the movement.

“What we want is for these acts to be investigated, and for the names of the disappeared and murdered victims to be cleared,” said Acosta. She claimed the rebel leader of the territory where her relatives were killed was under the command of a female rebel leader who now serves in congress.

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