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First FTA victims in El Salvador

Prensa Latina, Cuba

First FTA Victims in El Salvador

13 April 2006

El Salvador, Apr 13 (Prensa Latina) With just 40 days in force, the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the US already has negative effects for the Salvadoran people, the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) has denounced Thursday.

FMLN Communications Secretary Sigfrido Reyes told Prensa Latina the FTA has already its first victims in this Central American nation.

The government modified various laws such as royalties and copyrights that give unlimited privileges to transnationals and force prosecution of pirated material sellers.

Last week the police carried out a raid in San Salvador to catch sellers and seize their products, resulting in the injury of several people and 20 arrested on charges of terrorism, public disorder and aggravated damages.

Reyes noted that since those crimes are severely sanctioned, the people rallied to demand immediate release, which was achieved some hours ago.

He said that importation of agriculture products, basic beans, chicken and cattle meat among other duty-free goods have increased in these 40 days, warning this will cause serious problems to small and medium farmers, who are gradually disappearing.