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Cameraman Hit by Firework During Protest Dies in Rio

02/10/2014 - 14h57



Rio de Janeiro's Municipal Secretary of Health confirmed on Monday morning that the cameraman Santiago Ilídio Andrade, 49, has been confirmed as clinically brain dead.

Andrade was hit by a firework during street protests in Rio on February 6.

The information comes from a neurosurgical team at the Souza Aguiar Municipal Hospital, where Andrade has been in intensive care since last Thursday night.

Andrade's family have yet to make an official statement regarding his death. Speaking on their behalf, a representative of the hospital thanked all those who had been wishing for his recovery, as well as those who had donated blood on the family's request.

The tattoo artist Fábio Raposo was arrested on Sunday in connection with the incident. Raposo gave another protestor the firework which was to later hit Andrade.

His lawyer, Jonas Tadeu Nunes, said that he would today identify the individual who lit it. In exchange, he wants his client to respond to the charge of grievous bodily harm, rather than attempted murder.


Andrade was hit in the head by a firework lit by a protestor during a demonstration against price increases on the buses in Rio de Janeiro. A single journey in the city now costs R$3 (USD $1.25).

Upon being admitted to hospital, Andrade had emergency brain surgery. According to Rio's Municipal Secretary for Health, tests confirmed that there was no blood supply to 90% of the left side of his brain.

Andrade's radio station BandNews FM ran a campaign over the weekend, encouraging people to give blood at the city's haematology institute. Santi, as he was known by his colleagues, would have marked his tenth anniversary at the station this year.

Last July, he participated in the course "Journalism in areas of conflict," organized by the Joint Center for Peace Operations of Brazil (CCOPAB, in its Portuguese acronym), an institution linked to the army.

In his statement at the end of the course, Santiago paid tribute to his colleague Gelson Domingos da Silva, who was killed in 2011 by a stray bullet whilst he was covering confrontations between police and drug dealers in the Antares favela, in the west of Rio.

Andrade also covered the Confederations Cup last June and was due to work on the World Cup later this year.

He is survived by his wife, his daughter, and three stepchildren.

Translated by TOM GATEHOUSE

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