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  • Brazilian soldiers during a operation in Rocinha slum in Rio de Janeiro, September 22, 2017.

    Brazilian soldiers during a operation in Rocinha slum in Rio de Janeiro, September 22, 2017. | Photo: Reuters

Published 13 May 2018
Opinion

According to the Observatorio da Intervencao, 209 have been killed during police raids between Feb. 16 and April 15.

A military official killed a civilian on Saturday night in the northern part of the city, officially the first victim of a military intervention decreed by President Michel Temer on Feb. 16 although many charities and human rights organizations have been denouncing the number of civilians killed so far.

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Brazil: Another Massacre in Rio de Janeiro Amid 'No Results' Military Intervention

Diego Augusto Ferreira, 25, allegedly refused to stop his motorbike for a control near the Transolimpica road, close to the Villa Militar, according to the version of the Eastern Military Command.

One of the soldiers belonging to the squat shot him and he was killed immediately.

The news sparked protests in Villa Militar, with people burning buses near the tragedy.

The entire state of Rio de Janeiro has been under military intervention since Michel Temer’s government ordered the militarization of Rio in mid-February to combat violence. Since then, two left-wing politicians have been murdered, including councilwoman and activist Marielle Franco who was vocal against the militarization of Rio, and state violence that affects Black and impoverished youths disproportionately. 

Franco was murdered with bullets bought by Brazil's Federal Police. Meanwhile, in the last six months 50 people have been murdered in Rocinha, Rio’s biggest favela.

A recent report by the Intervention Observatory at Candido Mendes University also found that the number of massacres in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, has doubled since the military intervention was launched, while the number of shootouts has also significantly increased. Approximately 3,200 soldiers are now patrolling public streets in predominantly poor, working-class neighborhoods.

According to the Observatory, 209 have been killed during police raids between Feb. 16 and April 15.

Former President Dilma Rousseff characterized the intervention as a means to create an enemy, which "in Brazil's case, is poor Black people who live in periphery neighborhoods... It's not white people who live in Ipanema nor in Leblon."

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