The governor of Brazil’s Parana state announced a plan to use spy planes and satellites to boost security on its border with Paraguay, a key location for the trafficking of drugs, weapons, and contraband goods.
The plan, scheduled to take effect in October, will involve a large investment in technology to aid police and military operations.
In a meeting with Paraguayan officials, Governor Carlos Alberto Richa highlighted the problem of trafficking in the frontier region, saying “We’re going to armor our border to put an end to this binge.”
Paraguayan authorities expressed support for the security improvements, but voiced concern about the plan’s effect on workers in border communities. Thousands of Brazilians cross the Friendship Bridge every day to work across the border in Paraguay’s Punta del Este.
In July, Brazil and Paraguay signed bilateral agreements to boost information sharing, coordinate anti-narcotics operations and improve public safety in the region, amid concerns that various of Brazil’s drug trafficking groups have moved their operations across the border to Paraguay.
Like the massive police drive to clean up Rio de Janeiro’s favelas, the border security drive is part of Brazil’s efforts to combat crime in advance of the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics.