Security & Strategic Review - March 2024

PERU/ECUADOR: Bukele’s first disciples

El Salvador’s Nayib Bukele, already enjoying sky-high popularity at home due to his controversial but highly successful crackdown on criminal gangs, is acquiring a growing list of disciples abroad. Few have been as effusive in their praise as the governments of Ecuador and Peru, which have begun to copy Bukele’s blueprint in response to mounting concerns about organised crime. But, notwithstanding accusations that the strategy is built on a system of rampant human rights abuses, it is questionable whether ‘Bukelismo’ could be successfully replicated in the Andean region.

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