The death toll in the Vila Cruzeiro operation, in Penha, north of Rio de Janeiro, rose to 22 on Tuesday afternoon (24). The action of the Special Police Operations Battalion (BOPE), the Federal Police and the Federal Highway Police (PRF) was triggered during the early hours of the morning. to, according to the security forces, locate and arrest criminal leaders who are hiding in the community, including criminals from other states in the country.
The shooting in the region lasted about 12 hours. A climate of terror took over the neighborhood. The Getúlio Vargas State Hospital, in Penha, did not stop receiving bodies and wounded throughout the day.
Entities such as Justiça Global, Amnesty International and the Institute for the Study of Religion (ISER) and social movements signed a public note this afternoon addressed to Governor Claudio Castro (PL), to the Public Ministry of the State of Rio de Janeiro (MPRJ), to the Secretariat of the Military Police of the State of Rio de Janeiro, the Federal Police Department in Rio de Janeiro and the Superintendence of the Federal Highway Police in Rio de Janeiro, requesting the ceasefire of the operation.
“Organizations and movements have been receiving worrying reports from family members in despair, looking for news about people who are still missing. There are reports that bodies of victims and potential wounded are found in the forest region, on the border between Complexo da Penha and Alemão, and that mothers and family members would be mobilized to enter the place amid the shooting in the desperation of locating their relatives. Human rights activists are also in the middle of the crossfire, being threatened by security agents who are at the scene preventing the removal of new victims and repressing the demonstration of residents of the area”, says an excerpt from the note, which also highlights that 19 units schoolchildren had their functioning affected by the operation.
The Ombudsman and the Center for the Defense of Human Rights of the Public Defender’s Office of Rio de Janeiro went to the place and helped to guide the residents, systematizing the information received and asking the Public Ministry and the internal control bodies of police activity to adopt all measures to stop violence on the ground and ensure investigations into deaths and violations.
The Fogo Cruzado Institute recalled that the police action in Vila Cruzeiro this Tuesday takes place three months after another very similar one: on February 11, an operation by the Federal Highway Police (PRF) and the Special Police Operations Battalion of the PM ( Bope), also in Vila Cruzeiro, ended with nine dead. At that time, 17 schools were closed and basic health units had their activities affected.
“Today we had a resident killed in Penha. Yesterday mother and son were shot as they passed near an access to Vila Aliança, in Bangu, and a resident was shot in Rocinha, one of the few favelas in Rio where there is still a UPP [Unidade de Polícia Pacificadora]. How long have we seen these situations? And we see this because the bet is on the same failed solutions. There is no way to have a different result. This government is more than three years old, it is already a candidate for reelection, and to date it has not presented the management security plan”, says Cecília Olliveira, executive director of the Institute.
According to a survey by Fogo Cruzado, this year alone, 21 massacres took place in the metropolitan region of Rio de Janeiro, leaving at least 87 dead. In police operations, there were 16 massacres, which left 71 dead.
What does the PM say?
wanted by Brazil de factothe PM reported that the BOPE and PRF teams were preparing for the incursion when criminals started firing firearms in the upper part of the community.
According to the Press Office of the State Military Police Department, one person was injured in Chatuba, a community outside the area of the operation, and died on the spot. The area was cordoned off by a team from the Pacifying Police Unit (UPP) for expertise by the Capital Homicide Police Station.
According to the agency, 13 rifles, four pistols and 12 grenades were seized, in addition to drugs to be accounted for. The injured were rescued at the Getúlio Vargas State Hospital.
The note sent to the report also highlights that three of those injured would come from other states (Amazonas and Pará). According to the PM, in the locality known as Vacaria, more than 20 vehicles (motorcycles and cars) used by fleeing criminals were seized. Occurrences forwarded to the Capital Homicide Police Station.
The advisory said that it is still investigating the entry of wounded in health units in the region.
Source: BdF Rio de Janeiro
Editing: Jaqueline Deister