El Salvador's Palestinian connection
There is a sizable population of persons of Palestinian heritage who live in El Salvador, including president Tony Saca and former FMLN leader Schafik Handal. El Salvador's ambassador to Israel explained the connection in an interview posted on Haaretz.com:
Asked about the connection between Palestine and El Salvador, the ambassador explains that "during the Ottoman Empire, the Christians of Bethlehem sent the young people of the community to other countries, in order to prevent them from being drafted into the army. Some of them reached El Salvador, and today there is a community there of 70,000 Palestinian Christians, most of them from Bethlehem. They generally send their sons to find a bride in Bethlehem and to bring her to El Salvador, and they send their daughters to find a bridegroom in Bethlehem, and they remain there. All the descendants of the women are El Salvadorians by law, so that we have a community of 400 Palestinian Salvadorians."