Rio de Janeiro violence: Hostages freed as prison riot ends

From BBC - February 18, 2018

Brazil's riot police have released 18 hostages held by armed inmates at a Rio de Janeiro jail, officials say.

The unrest in the overcrowded prison in Japeri, which is effectively run by a criminal gang, began on Sunday.

Three inmates who took part in the mutiny were shot, but are not thought to have life-threatening injuries. Police seized three guns and a grenade.

The unrest comes just days after the army took control of security in the state of Rio de Janeiro.

Officials at the Milton Dias Moreira prison said the riot could have been in response to the new security measures, which are aimed at tackling worsening gang violence.

They said that eight prison wardens and 10 inmates had been taken hostage by rebelling prisoners.

The rebels gave themselves up after several hours of negotiations.

Rio residents have expressed fears of a surge in violence in the next few months.

Why has the violence worsened?


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