El Salvador profile
Outgoing president: Mauricio Funes
Mr Funes is the first left-wing president in two decades
Mauricio Funes' election victory in March 2009 marked the first time in 20 years that a left-wing leader had come to power in El Salvador.
He defeated his conservative rival from the Arena party which had previously won every election since El Salvador's civil war ended in 1992.
Within hours of taking office on 1 June 2009, Mr Funes ordered to re-establishment of full diplomatic ties with Cuba, after a break of 50 years.
Since coming to power, he has also launched a clampdown on street gangs.
Mr Funes' FMLN party (Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front) was founded by Marxist guerillas who were engaged in a conflict against the US-backed government in the 1980s.
At least 75,000 people were killed during the civil war. In 1992 the FMLN signed a peace agreement and re-branded itself as a legitimate political party.
Mr Funes himself was never involved in armed uprising. He gave up his career as TV journalist to run for president.
He is considered a moderate and says he admires US President Barack Obama. Like Mr Obama, he campaigned on a platform of change. Mr Funes says he wants to build a relationship of "understanding and mutual respect" with the United States.
He has also expressed admiration for the economic policies of Brazil's moderate left-wing president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
Mauricio Funes was born on 18 October 1959. He is married to a Brazilian doctor and has three children.
- In the presidential election of 2 February 2014, former guerrilla commander Salvador Sanchez, of the ruling Farabundo Marti Front for National Liberation (FMLN), is to face Norman Quijano of the opposition Nationalist Republican Alliance (ARENA).