CentAm Advocates for Violence Prevention

San Jose, (Prensa Latina) Central America needs to develop more preventive programs rather than using repression to solve the problem of the insecurity, several experts agreed.

The cost of repression is higher than social or political actions, said former Costa Rican Attorney General Francisco Dall Anese while taking part in a debate on citizen security organized by the newspaper “La Nacion”.

According to the experts, the problems are not solved by having more policemen, creating new laws or imprisoning more people, but with more social investments and intelligence work.

“The issue is to avoid committing the crimes, not to punish the already committed,” Dall Anese said.

In countries like Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, the experience of fighting crime has not been entirely successful because they have a prison overpopulation and an increasing rate of homicides.

To combat the scourge, the experts recommended restricting access to firearms, combat inequality in the distribution of wealth and educate people to resolve their conflicts non-violently.

The issue of public safety must be addressed with a comprehensive approach with prospects of sustainability, annalists José María Rico said.

Central America is one of the most violent regions in the world. It spends up to eight percent of its gross domestic product in the fight against crime and organized crime.

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