Brazilian troops, police stage operation in Rio favela

More than 3,000 soldiers and police officers staged an operation Wednesday in Rio de Janeiro's City of God favela in response to spiraling violence just days before the world famous carnival.

Published: 08th February 2018 10:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th February 2018 10:39 AM   |  A+A-

By AFP

RIO DE JANEIRO: More than 3,000 soldiers and police officers staged an operation Wednesday in Rio de Janeiro's City of God favela in response to spiraling violence just days before the world famous carnival.

Brazilian officials said 38 people were arrested in the operation, which followed mounting insecurity in City of God and other favelas where drug traffickers armed with automatic rifles rule the streets.

Troops were deployed at dawn mostly to encircle City of God, blocking access roads, while heavily armed police entered in search of suspects. However, an AFP correspondent also saw soldiers inside the favela where they and police guarded the maze-like network of streets.

Officials said five minors were among those detained in the operation, which focused on seeking a slew of gang leaders.

Security forces also seized drugs, guns and ammunition, said the Rio state security ministry.

At least three people were killed last week in shootouts between police and drug gangs in City of God, a sprawling neighborhood famous for the 2002 movie of the same name.

And on Tuesday in the Mare favela, there were fierce exchanges of gunfire between traffickers and police that left a 13-year-old boy dead.

Protesting locals set fires and used stones to block Rio's three principal highways, which all pass by Mare.

Hours earlier, criminals opened fire on a car, killing a three-year-old girl, local media reported.

Some 1.5 million people live in Rio's favelas, or slums -- a quarter of the city's population.

Brazil's armed forces deployed to Rio de Janeiro in July 2017 to help the badly overstretched police. Rio state has been badly hit by Brazil's recession and the slump in the oil market in the last few years, as well as massive corruption.

Last month, Defense Minister Raul Jungmann said that nationwide the security system "is broken."

The Rio carnival gets into full swing on Sunday, with the colorful samba parades attracting an estimated 1.5 million tourists.

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp