[QODLink]
Americas
Brazil police take over Rio de Janeiro slums
Authorities try to clean up city's drug-riddled favelas in preparation for 2014 Soccer World Cup and 2016 Olympics.
Last Modified: 15 Oct 2012 00:07

Police in Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro have taken control of the crime-infested slums or favelas in a bid to claim back portions of the city controlled by drug gangs, AFP news agency reports.

Police said in a release that the Sunday morning operation in Jacarezinho and Manguinhos favelas took about 20 minutes.

In the Jacarezinho slum, six shots were fired once police arrived, and one suspect was injured while trying to set fire to a barricade meant to keep officers out.

The operation began shortly before 5:00am local time (08:00 GMT) and involved about 800 police in riot gear and 13 armoured personnel carriers.

Heavily armed officers began patrolling the streets as soon as they moved in.

"The situation is calm," police spokesman Colonel Federico Caldas told local Globo News television.

This area will now become part of a state programme that establishes so-called peacekeeping police units [UPP] in shantytowns previously held by drug traffickers. This is the 29th such unit in Rio de Janeiro.

With the addition of Manguinhos, authorities have deployed 29 of the UPPs in more than 170 local communities, which are now patrolled by more than 6,770 special agents, according to military police statistics.

Authorities in Brazil are trying to take control of and clean up some of the most dangerous areas of the country in preparation for the 2014 Soccer World Cup and the Olympic Games of 2016.

Critics say the military style invasions are too heavy-handed, and simply push the drug gangs to other parts of the city.

258

Source:
Al Jazeera And Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
More than 400 gaming dens operate on native lands, but critics say social ills and inequality stack the deck.
The Palestinian president is expected to address the UN with a new proposal for the creation of a Palestinian state.
Nearly 1,200 aboriginal females have been killed or disappeared over 30 years with little justice served, critics say.
Ethnic violence has wracked China's restive Xinjiang region, leading to a tight government clampdown.
Malay artists revitalise the art of puppeteering by fusing tradition with modern characters such as Darth Vader.