Pará on alert

Organizations call for investigation into attacks in the state of Pará

03/03/2017 pará public security

Following a series of murders that occurred on January 20 and 21 in the Pará state capital of Belém, civil society organizations are demanding a swift and thorough investigation into the attacks. In just two days, 27 people were killed and another 24 were injured in different parts of the city.

The killings began shortly after the death of the military police officer Rafael da Silva, of the Tactical Metropolitan Patrol Unit of Pará, during an exchange of fire in a neighborhood of the city called Cabanagem. The Pará State Forensic Center and the State Bar Association (OAB-PA) have found signs that the killings may have been executions and related to the officer’s death.

The organizations wrote in an open letter to the state government that “the indiscriminate occurrence of serial killings, with signs of involvement by state agents, represents a threat to all of Pará state society”. They also believe that “the federal government should require an independent investigation to begin and collaborate in any way necessary”.

Another series of murders with similar characteristics occurred in late 2014 and they also started after the death of a military police officer. The episode resulted in the installation of an inquiry into militias in the Pará state legislature, which concluded that death squads were indeed operating in the state.

The letter was signed by Conectas, Justiça Global, the Sou da Paz Institute, the Brazilian Public Security Forum and the Defenders of Human Rights Institute.

> Click here to read the letter in full.