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Rio Governor Witzel Denounced to United Nations for Record Number of Deaths

By Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The Human Rights Commission of ALERJ (Rio de Janeiro’s Legislative Assembly) and Federal Deputy Talíria Petrone (PSOL-RJ) denounced to the UN (United Nations) what they consider a “genocidal agenda” of Governor Wilson Witzel (PSC), writes Brazilian media outlet UOL in its latest report.

In a letter sent to the UN today, Representative Renata Souza (PSOL), who chairs the commission and is a federal parliamentarian, highlights data from the IPS (Institute of Public Security) and points out that deaths in clashes with police officers in the state of Rio reached a record level in the first quarter of this year.

According to Renata Souza, who also sent a letter to the Organization of American States (OAS), the 434 people killed in actions by the security forces between January and March are directly related to the permissiveness of the governor, who favors the “slaughter” of criminals carrying guns and the use of helicopters as platforms for shooting during operations.

The denunciations were made the day after a police operation in the complex of favelas in Maré that left eight suspects dead – the action is the second most deadly since 2013, only surpassed by another operation in the Santa Teresa region, which left 15 dead in February.

If the accusations are accepted, Brazil must respond to the deaths in front of international courts.

The documents call for the UN to formally recommend to the Brazilian State to reduce the use of deadly force in police actions and for the agency to evaluate Witzel’s conduct, which encourages the use of deadly force by security agents.

The denunciation sent by Souza also points out the images shared by the governor of Rio de Janeiro in his social networks, in which he appears in police operations and even brandishing weapons.

The 15 deaths in the Fallet and Fogueteiro hills in February are also cited as examples of this type of policy.

Has Governor Witzel gone too far?
Has Governor Witzel gone too far?

Residents of Maré denounced the occurrence of many gunshots from helicopters against the community.

In videos published on social networks, it’s possible to see a police aircraft flying over Maré at low altitude. Witzel endorsed the police action in Maré to the newspaper “O Globo”.

In February, Witzel said, even in the face of allegations of abuse, that “what happened at Fallet-Fogueteiro Hill was a legitimate action of the Military Police.”

Witzel was approached through his press office to comment on the allegations presented to the UN and the OAS as well as records of the use of deadly force in his government, but no response was received before this report was published.

(Source: UOL)

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