Authorities must investigate the killing of human rights defender Marielle Franco

Marsha Scott
March 16, 2018

15 de marzo de 2018, 12:10Brasilia, mar 15 (Prensa Latina) Brazil was shocked today by the assassination last night of councilor for the Socialism and Freedom Party (PSOL) and human rights activist Marielle Franco, who opposed militarization of Rio de Janeiro.

Rio de Janeiro's Attorney General Eduardo Gussem should immediately call on the Group of Specialized Action Public Security (GAESP, in Portuguese), which is responsible for ensuring thorough investigations by police, to participate in the investigation. Critics countered that the move was actually made with an eye to wooing middle-class voters ahead of the national elections in October, given that Rio is far from being the most violent city in Brazil (it is not, in fact, event among the top 10).

As a black woman who campaigned for the rights of Rio's poorest and against police excesses, Franco stood out on the region's male and white-dominated political scene. She was also a point of pride. "They come to kill our young!" she said. As a young, black, lesbian female activist who grew up in the slums of Rio, she championed the underrepresented and was loved by other activists. And she had based her candidacy for city council on fierce criticism of the power structures that have for so long neglected and stigmatized favela residents.

- Ana c!ara otoni (@anaclaraotoni) March 15, 2018#MarielleFranco was an expert on police violence and on Saturday accused officers of being overly aggressive in searching residents of gang-controlled shanty towns.

And as a councilwoman, she had continued to use that voice on their behalf.

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In the City Assembly, she was head of the Women's Commission and last month had been nominated as rapporteur of the commission that is following the Federal intervention in Rio's public security.

"Another homicide of a young man that could be credited to the police". "Matheus Melo was leaving the church. How many more will have to die for this war to end?"

"We need to scream so everyone knows what's happening in Acari right now", she wrote in another post, referencing a neighborhood in Rio's north zone.

"The climate of near total impunity in Rio de Janeiro needs to end once and for all", Canineu said.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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