• Connect with us on Linkedin

Brazil to Send Armed Forces into Key Rio Slums

Brazil's armed forces enter a Rio slum Brazil's armed forces enter a Rio slum

Following new outbreaks of violence in Rio de Janeiro's favelas, Brazil's authorities have announced plans to send in troops to occupy one of the city's largest slums in the lead-up to the World Cup, prior to an attempt to install a UPP in the shantytown complex.

Linkedin
Google +

The governor of Rio de Janeiro state, Sergio Cabral, said armed forces would occupy the Complexo da Mare, a group of slums in the north of the state's capital. The announcement was made after a spate of attacks last week in nearby favelas, in which suspected drug traffickers fired at Police Pacification Units (UPPs), according to Reuters. The attacks prompted Cabral to ask President Dilma Rousseff to send federal troops into the complex, which is located in an important area in regards to security, reported the Rio Times.

Some 100,000 people live in Mare, which is composed of 16 slums that border the city's main international airport. Through them run three highways that reach the city's downtown, prompting Cabral to call the area both "sensitive" and "strategic."

Troops will enter Mare after the military police (BOPE), in an operation intended to drive out the gangs who presently control the area. A new UPP post with 1,500 members will later be put in place at an as yet undetermined time. In 2013, plans to install a UPP in the area were postponed.

While it is an uncommon move to send the military in to occupy favelas pre-pacification, it is not unprecedented, and was used in a 2010 occupation.

InSight Crime Analysis

Mare's geographic location and size makes it an important area for the Red Command, the drug trafficking gang that controls many of its favelas. However, sources in Rio told InSight Crime that the slum is not the city's main hub of drug trafficking, as had been reported in the international press.

Nevertheless, it registers significant violence, and establishing control will be important to Brazil's attempt to allay any security fears as the World Cup approaches. As this is not the first try at establishing a UPP there under Rio's pacification program, the current initiative is likely to be closely scrutinized.

SEE ALSO: Brazil News and Profiles

Though the pacification program has been lauded for bringing about a reported 65 percent drop in the murder rate in pacified areas, the recent attacks show the gangs' ability to reassert themselves in areas where UPPs are present, and have fueled criticisms over the program's shortcomings in regards to social investment.

But quelling violence in the short term is likely the most pressing concern for Rio's officials, who want to avoid any ugly headlines as Rio takes center stage for the World Cup.

Linkedin
Google +

---

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We also encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, provided that it is attributed to InSight Crime in the byline, with a link to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

InSight Crime Search

The Complete Organized Crime Database on the Americas

InSight Crime Social

facebooktwittergooglelinkedin

InSight Crime Special Series

The Zetas in Nuevo Laredo

Los Zetas in Nuevo Laredo

After the capture of Zetas boss "Z40," Nuevo Laredo is bracing itself for the worst. This investigation breaks down what makes the city such an important trafficking corridor, and what it will take for the Zetas to maintain their grip on the city.

See entire series »

 

Uruguay's Marijuana Bill

Uruguay: Marijuana, Organized Crime and the Politics of Drugs

Uruguay is poised to become the first country on the planet to regulate the production, sale, and distribution of the drug.

See entire series »

El Salvador's Gang Truce

El Salvador's Gang Truce

The truce between El Salvador's two largest gangs -- the MS-13 and the Barrio 18 -- opens up new possibilities in how to deal with

See entire series »

Juarez After The War

Juarez After The War

As a bitter war between rival cartels grinds to an end, Ciudad Juarez has lost the title of world murder capital, and is moving towards something more like normality.

See entire series »

The Zetas And The Battle For Monterrey

The Zetas and the Battle for Monterrey

InSight Crime delves into the Zetas' battle for Mexico’s industrial capital, Monterrey, getting to the essence of a criminal gang that defies easy definition.

See entire series »

Slavery in Latin America

Slavery in Latin America

InSight Crime coordinated an investigation into modern slavery, looking at how Latin America’s criminal groups traffic human beings and force them to work as slaves.

See entire series »

FARC, Peace and Criminalization

FARC, Peace and Possible Criminalization

The possibility of ending nearly 50 years of civil conflict is being dangled before Colombia. While the vast majority of the Colombian public want to see peace, the enemies of the negotiations appear to be strong, and the risks inherent in the process are high.

See entire series »

Displacement in Latin America

Displacement in Latin America

InSight Crime coordinated an investigation into the new face of displacement in Latin America, where organized criminal groups are expanding and forcing people to flee.

See entire series »

Target: Migrants

Target: Migrants

The growth of organized crime in Mexico and Central America has led to an increase in violence and insecurity across the region, posing challenges to citizens, public security forces, and travelers.

See entire series »

Zetas in Guatemala

The Zetas in Guatemala

Mexico's Zetas have taken Guatemala by storm, and they are testing this country and the rest of the region: fail this test, and Central America sinks deeper into the abyss.

See entire series »

Most Read

Testimony Describes Zetas' Ties to Mexico Governor

Testimony Describes Zetas' Ties to Mexico Governor

Testimony from a US federal court provides more fuel for accusations that a former governor of Veracruz, Mexico, accepted cash from the Zetas, which was then part of the Gulf Cartel.

Read more

Mexico's Kidnapping Hotspots: The High-Risk States

Mexico's Kidnapping Hotspots: The High-Risk States

Kidnapping is the most troublesome security problem facing Mexico’s government, and a breakdown of kidnapping reports by a watchdog group reinforces the idea that only long-term institutional reform can cure it.

Read more

Colombia Houses Prisoners in Bogota Park Due to Overcrowding

Colombia Houses Prisoners in Bogota Park Due to Overcrowding

Close to 70 prisoners are being held in a park in Bogota, underscoring both the unsustainable levels of overcrowding in Colombia's detention centers and the government's failure to provide adequate solutions.

Read more

Latest Criminal Profile