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Last Updated: Friday, 2 December 2005, 14:54 GMT
Amnesty condemns Brazilian police
By Tom Gibb
BBC News, Sao Paulo

Military police in Rio
Amnesty wants Brazil to reduce the number of police killings
A leading human rights group says Brazil has abandoned millions of its poor in shanty town to the control of criminal gangs and drugs traffickers.

In a new report, Amnesty International also criticises the large number of execution-style killings by police.

It says Brazil's public security policies have not only failed to reduce levels of violence and crime, but have contributed to their growth.

Police kill about 2,000 people a year in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo.


The report, entitled They Come in Shooting, strongly criticises the police for acting in poor communities only through violent invasions.

It accuses the security forces of extreme levels of human rights violations, including extra-judicial executions and torture.

Major urban centres are seeing a generation of young men killed in high levels of armed violence linked to drug crime
They Come in Shooting
Amnesty International report

It talks about widespread corruption within the police, and describes in detail a case earlier this year when police officers went on the rampage in a suburb of Rio, killing 29 people.

Among the victims of the policy, the report also concludes, are many police officers themselves, who are at high risk of attack from drug gangs.

Last year, 54 policemen were killed on duty in Rio.

While the report details some local examples of successful policing, Amnesty accuses successive state and national governments of negligence.

It recommends a complete overhaul of public security policy in Brazil to focus on crime prevention, better justice and small arms control.

See inside a Brazilian shanty town

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