What a police-occupied favela looks like

My images, of UPP police in Chapeu Mangueira and Babilonia favelas, from June 2011. AFP story from this weekend.

Sgt. Vagner Luis de Assis of the UPP (Brazilian Pacification Police Units) stands in front of a graffiti-painted wall in Rio de Janeiro’s Chapeu Mangueira favela.


UPP police interact with the community at a recreational spot in the Chapeu Mangueira favela, Rio de Janeiro.

Brazilian marines and paramilitary police stormed one of Rio’s most notorious shantytowns Sunday, as the city cleans up ahead of the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games.

It took just 20 minutes for the security forces to take over the Manguinhos slum in the predawn raid involving 1,300 police assisted by helicopters hovering overhead, and armored personnel carriers carrying 170 marines that plowed through road obstacles set up in the narrow streets.

No shots were fired, but three people were arrested. Police said that five alleged drug crime bosses that had fled to a nearby favela were killed on Saturday.

Authorities said they had seize 60 kilograms (132 pounds) of cocaine in the raid.

Police also increased their presence in Jacarezinho, a nearby favela and a major crack cocaine consumption center. Some 1,300 heavily armed police participated in the operations, officials said. More >


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