April 2023, the safest month in El Salvador in over 30 years. Based in Homicides

April 2023 Ended with 10 Homicides for a 0.33 Daily Rate

By Eddie Galdamez  | Updated on May 1st, 2023
Plaza Libertad El Salvador
Liberty Plaza in San Salvador

Based on homicides, April 2023 is the safest month in El Salvador in over 30 years. In April 2023, the Salvadoran National Police reported 10 homicides for a 0.33 daily murder rate. April 2023 had two fewer homicides than March 2023, the previous record holder.

April 2023 is the sixth consecutive month that the daily homicide rate in El Salvador is under 0.50. It is an impressive accomplishment considering that in 2019, the year Bukele took office, the daily murder rate was 6.6.

7 Safest Months in El Salvador (Based on Homicides)
Month Homicides Daily Homicide Rate
1 April 2023 10 0.33
2 March 2023 12 0.39
3 July 2022 13 0.42
4 November 2022 13 0.43
5 December 2022 14 0.45
6 January 2023 14 0.45
7 February 2023 13 0.46

The above homicide stats do not include the deaths of alleged gang members that have died in confrontations with the Salvadoran National Police or military security forces.

April Homicides in El Salvador

El Salvador’s security has drastically improved to new low levels since Nayib Bukele became president on June 1, 2019. For example, March 2023 is the 12 consecutive month when the daily homicide rate for the country has been under one.

Furthermore, under the current administration, El Salvador has achieved over 355 days with zero homicides. The days with zero homicides in El Salvador are remarkable, considering that before the Nayib Bukele Administration, El Salvador had experienced less than five days with zero homicides in a decade.

Daily Homicides Under President Bukele
Month 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
January 9.3 3.9 3.7 2.6 0.5
February 7.4 3.9 4.0 2.7 0.5
March 7.7 2.1 3.8 4.8 0.4
April 10.8 4.8 3.7 1.3 0.3
May 9.2 2.1 4.3 0.5
June 7.7 2.3 2.8 0.8
July 5.0 3.7 2.9 0.4
August 4.2 4.0 1.9 0.6
September 4.9 4.4 2.0 0.5
October 4.0 5.1 2.6 0.6
November 4.6 3.3 4.1 0.4
December 4.1 3.7 3.1 0.5
** Red is President Salvador Sanchez Ceren Administration FMLN. — Sources: Salvadoran National Police. PNC

2022 ended as the safest year in El Salvador in over 30 years; In 2022, 495 people were murdered, for a daily homicide rate of 1.4 or 7.8 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants. Once again, not including alleged gang members killed by Salvadoran authorities, 120 in 2022

This year “2022” marks a milestone in the history of El Salvador, an unprecedented event, 2022 becomes the safest year. As the Security Cabinet of our President Nayib Bukele, we have a firm commitment to continue building a free and secure country. Gustavo Villatoro, Minister of Justice and Public Security.

Reduction in homicides is one of the main achievements of the Nayib Bukele administration.

Salvadoran authorities credit the implementation of the Territorial Control Plan and the State of Exception launched on March 27, 2022, for the impressive homicide reduction. Both plans have allowed Salvadoran authorities to remove gang members from the streets.

The Territorial Control Plan launched in 2019 has five phases: preparation, opportunity, modernization, incursion, and extraction. Two more phases are not publicly known right now.

The Regime of Exception was approved last March by the Legislative Assembly at the request of Bukele. Since then, the number of homicides has dropped substantially.

During this exception regime, more than 67,000 people have been detained – suspected of being gang members or collaborators. The controversial security measure has been extended over 12 times.

National and international human rights organizations have criticized the exceptional regime for human rights violations, arbitrary arrests, and the death of inmates in prisons.

However, surveys conducted during the State of Exception have shown that the majority of Salvadorans approve of this controversial measure.