SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador — El Salvador's government has approved an initiative presented by women's rights groups for a national alert over gender-based violence.

Among the measures is a campaign to combat sexual harassment in public institutions, emphasizing prevention of sexual violence and killings of women.

Government institutions have 10 days to present their plans for aligning with the initiative.

President Salvador Sanchez Ceren called Thursday for "forceful" actions to diminish gender violence in the Central American nation, which has one of the world's highest homicide rates.

According to government figures, 154 women have been murdered this year from January through May 2. That's up from 127 during the same period in 2017. The statistics also say four out of every 10 women have experienced some kind of violence.