Public Papers of Jimmy Carter, 1980-1981

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Author: Jimmy Carter  | Date: January 5, 1981

Slaying of Three Persons in El Salvador
Statement by the White House Press Secretary.
January 5, 1981

The Department of State spoke yesterday to our grief and dismay at the killing of two Americans and the Salvadorian with whom they worked. I want, on the President’s behalf, to underscore the sense of loss and outrage we feel for what happened in El Salvador. Also on behalf of the President, I want to offer deeply felt condolences to the families of those three dedicated and brave men.

They were dedicated to the building of a just and free society in El Salvador. Their work on agrarian reform served the cause of social justice in that country as no other program has done. That work will continue. It is one of the most effective instruments to counter the objectives of both the extreme right and the extreme left.

NOTE: Press Secretary Jody Powell read the statement to reporters at 4:55 p.m. at his regular news briefing in the Briefing Room at the White House.

Michael P. Hammer, of Potomac, Md., and Mark David Pearlman, of Seattle, Wash., both with the American Institute for Free Labor Development, and Jose Rodolfo Viera, president of El Salvador’s Institute for Agrarian Transformation, were slain in San Salvador on January 4.

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