The Americas

El Salvador judge summons ex-soldiers in El Mozote massacre

A judge in El Salvador has reopened the case of the infamous El Mozote massacre during the country's civil war and summoned 20 military suspects to appear in court.

Plaintiffs' lawyer Wilfredo Medrano said Wednesday that the suspects have been ordered to appear March 29-30 to be informed of the case against them. They include a former defense minister and high-ranking generals.

More than 1,000 people were killed in December 1981 in and around the hamlet of El Mozote, in one of Latin America's bloodiest massacres. Hundreds more were displaced.

Soldiers entered the area looking for guerrillas but killed civilians instead.

Reopening the case became possible after El Salvador's Supreme Court overturned a 1993 amnesty for crimes and human rights abuses committed during the civil war.