Take at look at the world’s toughest mega prison, a high tech prison in El Salvador. In a desperate bid to curb crime, El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele has moved thousands of gang members into the world’s toughest mega prison. It can hold 40,000 prisoners.
The men were shackled and stripped before being herded into a cell. Many bear gang tattoos and have their heads shaved.
Thousands of gangsters shackled and stripped
Tens of thousands of gangsters have been shackled and stripped in the world’s toughest mega prison, built by El Salvadoran officials hellbent on winning their war against violent street gangs. They’ve been sent there as part of President Nayib Bukele’s controversial ‘war on gangs’, which has seen his country round up 64,000 suspected members of the notorious MS-13 and Barrio-18 gangs.
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They’ve been transferred to a 40,000-capacity jail in Tecoluca, about 46 miles southeast of San Salvador. The government claims it’s the largest in the Americas, but human rights groups have criticized its plans.
Inmates are stacked up in four-storey sheet metal bunks, which are not meant to be comfortable. They can only leave their cells to attend legal hearings or if they’re punished in an isolation cell.
Thousands of gangsters have just moved into El Salvador’s latest high-tech prison from which they will never leave. They’re pictured being shackled and stripped before they line up to see an ominous message stating the following: “This is your new home”.
What they quickly learn is that this will not be a place for relaxation, as there are no mattresses in the facility. In fact, 20 per cent of inmates will not even get a bed at all.
The glitzy jail is located in Tecoluca, 74km southeast of the capital San Salvador and is designed for a whopping 40,000 inmates. Each cell is able to hold up to 100 inmates and boasts electric fences surrounding its perimeter, along with a 36ft-high concrete wall. The facility also boasts a few other blinged out features like a multi-million-dollar sports complex and a network of dozens of cameras to keep watch over prisoners.
A look at the new world’s toughest mega prison, built on President Bukele’s orders after he declared a ‘war’ on gangs last March, reveals a stark reality. Inmates are stacked in groups and led into their cells, where they’re left seated on the floor next to bare four-storey sheet metal bunks with no mattresses.
The lack of toilets in the bleak new complex is an affront to basic human rights, as well as a violation of incarceration standards. Only 80 metal bunks are provided for every 100 prisoners – a solitary number that leaves hundreds of inmates in a tiny cell without access to a bathroom.
It’s also a significant concern as water contaminates cells, and a polluted water supply can cause infections. This is a particularly serious problem for Tallassee, which depends on the River Tallapoosa for its drinking water. PLN has reported extensively on the issue of polluted water in prisons.