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Death squad

A death squad is an extra-judicial group whose members conduct executions of persons they believe to be political unreliable or undesirable. Death squads were common in Central America during the 1980s, many of which were believed to be employed by various governments or the CIA. Death squads often consisted of members of the national armed forces and often acted in close cooperation with the highest officials of the military. In El Salvador, the death squads achieved notoriety for their murders of Archbishop Oscar Romero as well as four American nuns. The death squads in that country had close ties to the US-supported government.

During the U.S. invasion of Iraq, U.S. officials used the term to describe fedayeen paramilitary forces who used guerrilla tactics to fight U.S. and U.K. troops.

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