Prison riots in Brazil have become a common activity
Photo by Sakeeb Sabakka at

According to the fresh reports about 50 have been dead and many are injured in a prison riot in Brazil. This incident occurred in the state of Para in Brazil. Among the killed about 16 were beheaded. So the identity of the deceased prisoners could not be determined until now.
This incident broke out on Monday. Authorities say that this riot was a result of clashes between different groups of jail. According to the state authorities of Para, the clash started at 1000 GMT. Authorities reported that two main rival groups started these clashes and captured two penitentiary officers. However, the security of the jail has freed these officers. Footages released on various media outlets showed that dark smoke is coming out of the jail compound and prisoners are sitting on the roof.
The prison riot in Brazil is not a new thing for Brazillian population. Brazil’s prisoner population is about 750,000. It is the world’s third-largest prisoner population. Its prison gangs have developed their influence beyond the walls of prisons.
However, the current prison riot in Brazil has jolted the political elite of the country. Brazillian President Jair Bolsonaro also raised concerns on this issue. In a statement issued from the president office, he said that his government is looking towards strengthening the security of the prisons. He also promised the construction of a new jail intending to increase the security of existing ones.
However, President Bolsonaro’s powers are limited in the prison department. Most of the prisons are controlled by the state machinery. President Bolsonaro can make his dream come true by starting negotiations with state elements of Brazil. Only an effective proposal can bring much-needed jail reforms.
As stated earlier the prison riot in Brazil are not something new for Brazilians. About two years ago in January 2017, more than one hundred and fifty people were killed in prison clashes. These clashes continued for three weeks. These clashes occurred in many prisons in Brazil. These clashes were a result of rivalry between the supporters of two drug factions.
Unfortunately, jail clashes have become a routine in Brazil. In May 2019, about fifteen prisoners were found dead. They were beaten to death by another rival group. This incident occurred in the city of Manaus.
Only jail reforms and tight security can stop the occurrence of these incidents. Brazil needs to construct more prisons. Supporters of rival groups should not be kept in the same prison. Brazil needs to develop a mechanism to cut off the connection between prisoners and their masters living outside the jail. Prisons should be established at areas away from the population. Effective day and night visits by police officers can reduce the chances of clashes.
Jail authorities can devise punishments for code of conducts. In jails where clashes are more frequent, the prisoners should not be allowed to gather at the same place as the dining hall, etc. Investigations should be made on how fuel and other burning material reached to the prisoners.
Jail authorities should focus on maintaining discipline instead of establishing relations with the prisoners. The barracks of prisoners should be changed consistently. No barrack can be given to some prisoners permanently. Similarly, no two inmates should have been placed for a longer period.
The jail should be a place to stop the criminals. It should not be a place to promote violence. So the state authorities of Brazil are required to formulate a policy in collaboration with the President to bring effective reforms in prison management. If timely steps are not taken, the Brazilian jails will become a hub of violence.

Related: Another Corruption Scandal In Brazil

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