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Number of Military Troops Increases During Brazilian Elections in the Face of Attacks Against Politicians

09/30/2016 - 11h30

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FROM BRASÍLIA
FROM SALVADOR
FROM RIO

Amid the cases of violence against the candidates in their election campaigns, the Minister of Defense, Raul Jungmann, said that the Brazilian Armed Forces will act with a number of troops "above average" in the municipal elections to be held on Sunday, October 2.

Jungmann says that there will be at least 25,000 men patrolling 408 cities in the country.

On Wednesday, September 28, shots fired during an election parade in Itumbiara, in the state of Goias, killed Zé Gomes, a PTB candidate to City Hall. Public worker Gilberto do Amaral, who fired the shots that also injured the state's vice governor, José Eliton (PSDB), was killed soon after in a gun fight with the police.

Supreme Court Justice Gilmar Mendes, who is also the president of the Supreme Electoral Court, said the incident was "shocking." Justice Mendes contacted the Minister of Justice, Alexandre de Moraes, to ask for investigations to be sped up.

"We are not sure what motivated the attack in Itumbiara, but apparently it was connected to political actions," said Minister Mendes.

Since June, 45 pre candidates or candidates have been targeted by gun shots and 28 of them died. Michael Mohallen, a Law professor at FGV, says that the country has always had a tradition of violence during election periods, when criminal groups use politicians to expand their networks.

Translated by THOMAS MUELLO

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