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Peace Corps Reviews Operations in El Salvador and Guatemala

WASHINGTON, D.C., December 21, 2011 The Peace Corps has cancelled its January 2012 volunteer training classes for El Salvador and Guatemala. Due to ongoing security concerns, the agency is enhancing operational support to currently serving volunteers in these countries.

All currently serving volunteers in El Salvador and Guatemala are safe and accounted for. The Peace Corps will continue to closely monitor and assess the safety and security climate and enhance volunteer support in these countries.

The Peace Corps operated in El Salvador between 1962 and 1979, and returned in 1993. Over 2,000 Americans have served in El Salvador since the program was established, working with communities on projects focused on community, economic, and youth development. There are 113 volunteers currently serving in El Salvador.

The Peace Corps has operated in Guatemala since 1963. Over 4,800 Americans have served in Guatemala since the program was established, working with communities on projects focused on health, youth development, environment and agriculture. There are 222 volunteers currently serving in Guatemala.

Families with questions or concerns may contact the Peace Corps Counseling and Outreach unit, which maintains a 24-hour, 7 days a week duty system. The telephone number during standard office hours is (800) 424-8580, extension 1470.

About the Peace Corps: President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961, by executive order. Throughout 2011, Peace Corps is commemorating 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world. Historically, more than 200,000 Americans have served with the Peace Corps to promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of 139 host countries. Today, 9,095 volunteers are working with local communities in 75 host countries. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment. Visit www.peacecorps.gov for more information.
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