Brazil’s government ordered the country’s national army to take command over Rio de Janeiro’s state police forces on Friday, a move without parallel since Latin America’s largest economy transitioned back to democracy more than three decades ago.
According to statistics from Rio de Janeiro state, the region has suffered a 26 percent surge in deadly violence since 2015, driven by confrontations between police, drug gangs, and paramilitary forces. The army has intervened in the city before, most notably in the lead-up to the 2014 soccer World Cup (CNN).
The emergency measure could put a spoke in the wheel for President Michel Temer’s key priority to reform Brazil’s pensions system, which needs a constitutional amendment to pass and which is forbidden during this sort of federal intervention.
The Economist (may be behind paywall) writes that: “Without change, the publicly financed pension systems for private- and public-sector workers will overload the government with debt, sap spending on other priorities, such as reducing poverty, and crimp economic growth.”
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