Rio Police accused of carrying out abuses during raid which resulted in 25 fatalities
At least 25 persons were killed in a violent Police raid in Rio de Janeiro. Video footage shown on television shows drugs traffickers in the Jacerezinho zone trying to escape by running over roofs when Police vehicles accompanied by helicopters arrived.
The raid was one of the most violent and most fatal in Rio during the last ten years. The Rio state has been suffering incidents of violence related to drugs. The Police said the victims include members of a group of traffickers as well as Police officials. Police also said that besides trafficking drugs, the members were stealing merchandising and stopping trains to steal from passengers. During a media conference the Police showed a number of firearms captured, including a machine gun.
Several civil rights groups have condemned the raid carried out on Thursday. Amnesty International criticised the Police of homicides in a zone where more black people reside and said that during the first three months of this year over 450 people have been killed in similar raids. Included in the number of fatalities are four Police officials. The UN Human Rights Office also criticised this raid. Residents said the Police also killed those that wanted to surrender to be arrested while entering homes without having the necessary mandate. The Police have denied any wrong-doing and claimed to have acted in self-defence.