74 Days Without Homicides in El Salvador Thus Far in 2024, Seven More Than the Same 2023 Period

By Eddie Galdamez  | Updated on Apr 7th, 2024
Days without homicides in El SalvadorSan Salvador. Image by @alcaldia_ss

Thus far in 2024, there have been 74 days without homicides in El Salvador; also, the country has achieved over 545 in total under the Bukele administration.

It is an impressive achievement, considering that before the Nayib Bukele Presidency, El Salvador had experienced less than five days without homicides in 15 years.

To put it in context, the previous three administrations of ex-presidents Tony Saca (2005 to 2009), Mauricio Funes (2009 to 1014), and Salvador Sanchez Ceren (2014 to 2019) achieved less than five days day with zero homicides in 15 years.

Days Without Homicides in El Salvador
2019 2020 2021 2022 2023 2024
January 0 0 2 3 22 24
February 0 1 0 1 21 24
March 0 4 0 3 20 22
April 0 3 0 15 24 4
May 0 6 2 17 18
June 0 4 1 14 21
July 1 2 5 19 23
August 0 2 8 18 20
September 2 2 5 18 20
October 2 0 3 19 15
November 0 2 2 18 23
December 1 0 3 21 19
Total 6 26 31 166 246 74
** Red is President Salvador Sanchez Ceren Administration FMLN. --- Sources: Salvadoran National Police. PNC

The stats of days with zero murders for 2022, 2023, and 2024 do not include the deaths of alleged gang members who died in confrontations with Salvadoran security forces; 120 in 2022, 38 in 2023, and two thus far in 2024.

Improved Security in El Salvador

In 2024, the Bukele administration will complete five years in office, and during this time, El Salvador achieved an impressive homicide reduction. The government attributes this reduction to its territorial control Plan and the State of Exception.

The territorial control plan started in June 2019, when Nayib Bukele took office as president. The security measure has seven phases, of which six are already being implemented. The last phase is unknown as the government hasn’t made it public.

The State of Exception began in late March 2022 as a petition of the Salvadoran Security Cabinet and was approved quickly by the Salvadoran Legislative Assembly. This security measure that restricts some constitutional guarantees has been extended 24 times since its implementation.

Undoubtedly, the days without homicides in El Salvador have drastically increased since the State of Exception began. A popular explanation for the achievement of these numbers is the arrest of over 78,000 alleged gang members or gang contributors.

El Salvador Homicide Rate
Year Total Homicides Daily Homicide Rate Homicides per 100,000 Inhabitants
2024
*Jan 1 to Apr 6
27 0.28 1.6
*Estimated
2023 154 0.42 2.4
2022 496 1.36 7.8
2021 1147 3.14 18.1
2020 1341 3.67 21.2
2019 2398 6.57 35.8
2018 3346 9.17 50.4
2017 3962 10.85 60.2
2016 5280 14.47 81.0
2015 6656 18.24 103.0
2014 3921 10.74 61.3
2013 2513 6.88 40.6
2012 2594 7.11 42.1
2011 4371 11.98 71.2
2010 3987 10.92 65.2

Days Without Homicides in El Salvador

It is hard to believe that entering 2024, the days without homicides in El Salvador occur often. In 2018, the year before Nayib Bukele became president, the average daily murder rate was 9.17, and there were no days with zero homicides during that year. Salvadoran culture is changing as violence is decreasing!