Brazil Police Take Over Rio Favela Without Firing Shots

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1114-brazil-favela.jpg_full_600Hundreds of Brazilian security officers backed by armored vehicles and helicopters, have occupied 12 shanty towns in Rio de Janeiro.

The major operation is part of an ongoing drive by authorities to push drug gangs away from poor areas, according to BBC.

Two new police pacification units (UPP) will be set up in Lins de Vasconcellos, home to about 15,000 people.

Since 2008, another 34 UPPs have been set up across the state, but there have also been reports of police brutality.

Rio will host the 2016 Olympics and next year’s football World Cup.

‘Step towards peace’

The police officers were backed by at least two armored vehicles and three helicopters as they moved into the slums at dawn on Sunday.

There has been no resistance from gangs on Sunday’s operation, authorities say.

“This is another step towards peace,” Rio state Governor Sergio Cabral Filho told reporters.

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