Translation of article “Representante do Ministério da Segurança da Argentina visita favelas cariocas pacificadas.” From O Globo, published October 20, 2011.
RIO – Argentina could soon have a Police Pacification Unit (UPP) with a Buenos Aires accent. The State Security Secretary announced that Argentinean anthropologist Sabina Frederic, professor and researcher at the Universidade Nacional de Quilmes and part of a group working on restructuring police activity in Buenos Aires, was in Rio this week to take a closer look at the program. She visited the UPP in Cidade de Deus on Wednesday, as a representative of Argetina’s Ministry of Security. The community has similarities to the informal settlements in Buenos Aires, because it is on flat ground.
In Buenos Aires, informal settlements, called “villas miserias,” are found on the outskirts of the capital and near neighborhoods like La Boca, in the port zone. Recently, the city has faced an increase in drug trafficking, though traffickers lack the firepower and organization of their counterparts in Rio. Police have also had difficulty resolving conflicts in poorer areas. Last December, a confrontation between residents of the neighborhood Villa Soldati and groups of homeless people, the majority of them immigrants, left four dead. This level of violence is new to Buenos Aires.
Sabina will assess the possibility of transferring Rio’s model to Argentina. Aside from Cidade de Deus, she visited Pavão-Pavãozinho, in Copacabana, and Morro Dona Marta, in Botafogo. In a statement, Security Secretary José Mariano Beltrame stated that the Argentinean government’s interest reflects the positive effects the UPPs have had. “We offer information about the project’s planning and implementation process,” said the statement.
This is the second time that Argentineans have visited Rio to study the UPPs. In March a delegation of thirty representatives came to Rio to see the program.