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Tens of Thousands Mourn El Salvador's Handal


Tens of thousands of mourners in El Salvador have paid tribute to former rebel leader Schafik Handal before his burial Sunday.

The streets of San Salvador were filled with mourners in red shirts, bidding an emotional farewell to the former communist guerrilla, who became the opposition party leader.

Handal died of a heart attack January 24 at the age of 75.

He commanded the leftist Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front rebel group (FMLN) during the nation's 12-year civil war, which ended in 1992. He also led the chief opposition party and was defeated in the 2004 presidential election by Elias Antonio Saca.

It is reported that the crowd outside Handal's funeral was likely the largest to assemble in El Salvador's streets in the past 25 years.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.
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