At least one dozen youths killed in clash at Guatemalan rehabilitation center

A dozen youthful offenders were killed on Monday two of them decapitated during a clash between two rival street gangs at a youth correction facility in Guatemala City.

At least eight other youths were wounded during the battle between members of the rival Mara Salvatrucha and the Mara 18 gangs at the youth detention center.

Two of the youths had their heads blown off, apparently by hand grenades tossed by a hit squad of rival gang members. The attackers broke into the facility; most of the victims were apparently being held at there.

All of the dead were members of the Mara 18 gang. Only 10 guards were on duty at the time.

"What we have here is a commando-style raid by armed gang members who made their way into the center and opened fire," said Assistant Interior Minister Julio Godoy Anleu.

A war between the feuding gang members broke out between members of the two rival gangs on Aug. 15 at Guatemala's El Hoyon prison, setting off a chain reaction at six other facilities in confrontations that left 35 dead.

On Sept. 6, gang members attacked a group of rivals with grenades at a Guatemalan youth detention center, injuring 12 people.

On the streets, the gangs fight each other for control of neighborhoods where they extort and assault people, and deal drugs, reports the AP.

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