Salvadoran court orders president to answer on 1979 kidnap

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador — El Salvador’s Supreme Court has ordered President Salvador Sanchez Ceren to present any information he has on the fate of a South African diplomat who was kidnapped and disappeared by leftist guerrillas in 1979.

Then-Ambassador Archibald Gardner Dunn was kidnapped by a guerrilla faction that became part of the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front, or FMLN. The rebels demanded a ransom but the diplomat was never turned over and his body never found.

Sanchez Ceren is a former leader of the FMLN, which disbanded and became a political party following 1992 peace accords.

Presidential press officer Roberto Lorenzana said Wednesday the court order “has a political motive to damage the president’s image.”

He said Sanchez Ceren was still an activist in the teachers’ movement at the time of the kidnapping.

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