El Salvador, officially the Republic of El Salvador (Spanish: República de El Salvador, literally "Republic of The Savior"), is the smallest and the most densely populated country in Central America. It is bordered on the northeast by Honduras, on the northwest by Guatemala, and on the south by the Pacific Ocean. El Salvador's capital and largest city is San Salvador. As of 2018, the country had a population of approximately 6.42 million.
El Salvador is extremely prone to natural disasters. It ranks second in the world by the World Bank in terms of overall vulnerability based on Economic Risk to GDP from two or more natural hazards (WB, SEP2015). In 1998, Hurricane Mitch devastated the country, leaving 200 dead and over 30,000 homeless. In Jan. and Feb. 2001, major earthquakes struck El Salvador, damaging about 20% of the nation's housing. An even worse disaster beset the country in the summer when a severe drought destroyed 80% of the country's crops, causing famine in the countryside. In 2005, the country was simultaneously affected by the eruption of the Ilamatepec Volcano and tropical storm Stan. El Salvador suffered in 2009 the consequences of the flooding and landslides following heavy rainfall provoked by the combined effect of Hurricane IDA and a low-pressure system off the Pacific Coast. In 2010, Agatha was a faint but destructive tropical cyclone in the Eastern Pacific Ocean which caused the evacuation of 18,000 people, of which 16,000 were hosted in shelters, with damages and losses estimated at 112.1 million dollars (GoES, June 2010). Also Alex, the first Hurricane of the season in the Atlantic, classified in category 1 caused a lot of damages, 3573 evacuees from 55 communities and 3561 people who were temporary housed. In 2011, 12E Tropical Storm affected 200,000 individuals, damaged 2,000 homes and 32 reported deaths. As of August 2016, active local transmission of Zika virus by Aedes species mosquitoes has been identified in this country and affected the population.
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Facts and Figures