Amnesty Condemns Killings of Police in Brazil and Warns Against Retaliation

Amnesty International released a note saying the it totally repudiates the recent wave of attacks against police officers in São Paulo, Brazil.

The last attack, which took place on 12 January, 2006, in Vila Maria, left one officer dead and two injured.

In its public statement, Amnesty says:

Police officers must be able to go about their duties without fear of violent attack. These incidents should be thoroughly investigated, and those found guilty brought swiftly to justice according to international human rights standards.

However, these attacks should not be used as an excuse for the promotion or implementation of repressive or abusive security measures by the state authorities.

The persistent violations of human rights perpetrated throughout São Paulo’s criminal justice system have only contributed to high levels of violence in the state.

Amnesty International urges the state authorities to address the problems of violent and discriminatory policing as well as the cruel, inhuman and degrading conditions within its prisons to ensure the effective provision of security for all citizens including law-enforcement officials.

Only through the development of a public security policy which is inclusive, respectful of the communities they serve, and based on the protection of all, will the authorities reduce levels of violence in the city. At the same time this will ensure a safer environment in which police can work.

Amnesty International – www.amnesty.org

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