RIO DE JANEIRO – The number of shooting incidents in Rio de Janeiro increased 36 percent in the first four months of military intervention in the policing of the Brazilian state, which has been facing a security crisis, according to a report released by a group of independent experts on Saturday.
“Police and military mega-operations follow each other, each time more in number, with no significant results. So many personnel were never seen, at such high cost, to get so little,” the report by the Intervention Observatory said.
Saturday marked exactly four months since President Michel Temer ordered the dispatch of the army to assume full control of police in the state of Rio de Janeiro to try to stop the wave of violence unleashed after the 2016 Olympic Games.
According to the report, between Feb. 16 and Saturday, there were 3,210 shooting incidents in the region compared to 2,355 reported in the four months immediately preceding the military intervention, an increase of 36 percent.
There were 1,794 intentional homicides, 13 percent fewer compared to the four pre-intervention months, 444 deaths caused by the authorities (34 percent more), and 60,709 robberies (5 percent increase) during the same period.
The report said that during the first four-month period with the Army in charge of Rio’s security, 203 operations were launched deploying some 100,000 personnel.
“To dismantle criminal networks, intelligence-based research is necessary, and in order to improve public security, we need structural measures, the integration of forces and to fight corruption,” the group of experts said.
Last year, violence in the entire state of Rio, whose population is concentrated mainly in the metropolitan area of its capital, left 6,731 dead, including more than 100 police officers and 10 children hit by stray bullets.