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News > Brazil

Brazil: Marielle Franco's Murder Turns Five Years in Impunity

  • Brazilians place offerings on stairs painted in memory of Marielle Franco, 2023.

    Brazilians place offerings on stairs painted in memory of Marielle Franco, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/ @KarinaNohales

Published 14 March 2023

"Who ordered her murder?" Quite conveniently, this question went unanswered during the presidency of Jair Bolsonaro.

The relatives of councilwoman Marielle Franco, who was assassinated in Rio de Janeiro on March 14, 2018, trust that this political crime can finally be clarified during the administration of President Lula da Silva.


Marielle Franco Murder to Be Investigated Again

"Without a doubt, Lula's return to the Presidency gives us hope that we will finally find out who ordered Marielle's death and why," said councilor Monica Benicio, who is the widow of the socialist activist.

After assuming the Brazilian presidency on January 1, Lula appointed Marielle's sister, Anielle Franco, as Minister of Racial Equality. He promised to make efforts to clarify this hate crime, which has become a symbol of impunity in Brazil.

Justice Minister Flavio Dino ordered the creation of a special group in the Federal Police, which will support the investigations of the Civil Police of the state of Rio de Janeiro.

Former President Jair Bolsonaro "never showed respect for Marielle's memory or commitment to solving the case. On the contrary, her death was treated with jokes," Benicio recalled on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the human rights activist's murder

The tweet reads, "Justice for Marielle Franco! The cry for justice continues to resound! We will not remain silent. It has been 5 years without answers. It is urgent to find out who ordered the death of Marielle Franco and punish them."

This political assassination has great international repercussions because Marielle was a Black woman who had stood out for her initiatives in support of minorities and her strong denunciation of the activity of parapolice groups in Rio de Janeiro.

In 2019, two former police officers were arrested for her murder and accused of having been the crime's material authors. So far, however, investigations have not identified the people who commissioned the killing. Nor have the immediate motives for the crime been clarified.

"Today we see some light at the tunnel's end because the Justice minister promised he will endeavor to elucidate our daughter's brutal murder," Antonio Francisco da Silva, Marielle's father, said, stressing that the his family lived in despair during the Bolsonaro presidency.

"With the president who fled the country, we never got answers because he interfered and created obstacles so that we couldn't have answers," Da Silva said, recalling that Bolsonaro left Brazil even before handing over his post to avoid multiple investigations against him.

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