Salvadoran defense minister visits troops in Iraq

El Salvador's defense minister and two federal legislators are in Iraq to visit the Central American nation's troops, the government said Monday.

Gen. Otto Romero and legislators Jose Almendariz and Guillermo Gallegos arrived in the southern Iraqi city of Hillah on Saturday to "strengthen the morale" of El Salvador's 380 soldiers there, said a news release from the Ministry of Defense.

The Salvadoran troops, scheduled to be replaced in February, are carrying out peacekeeping and humanitarian work in Hillah, including rebuilding schools.

El Salvador is the only Latin American nation with a military presence in Iraq. Two of its soldiers have been killed there, one by Iraqi insurgents and one in an accident, AP reported. V.A.

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