Japanese

  1. Home
  2. Get Involved
  3. Urgent Action
  4. FEDERATIVE REPUBLIC OF BRAZIL: PROTESTING TEACHERS FACE CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION

FEDERATIVE REPUBLIC OF BRAZIL:
PROTESTING TEACHERS FACE CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION

Update info:
18 May 2015
Country:
FEDERATIVE REPUBLIC OF BRAZIL
Subject:
protesting teachers
Period:
23 Jun 2015
Distribution date:
18 May 2015
UA No:
104/2015

The Public Security Secretary and many other high-level State officials have been replaced following the teachers’ protest and police repression on 29 April in Paraná State, south Brazil. The Public Defence’s Office informed Amnesty International that all those detained during the protest were released but will be subject to criminal investigation.  

Around 20,000 people, mostly teachers from the public education system, gathered on 29 April in front of the State Assembly in the city of Curitiba, the capital of Paraná, to protest against changes in the state’s rules for social security and retirement for civil servants. Teachers had been on strike since 25 April to protest against these changes and had been gathering in front of the State Assembly since 28 April as a vote on the new state rules was expected. Around 4pm on 29 April, the military police that were present (including riot police units) received orders to disperse the protest and proceeded to severely repress participants using tear gas, rubber bullets and truncheons. 

On 8 May the former Public Security Secretary was replaced by a new Secretary. This change is a result of the crisis in the Paraná State Government after the episode of police repression against the teachers’ protest on 29 April in the city of Curitiba, the capital of Paraná. There have been several other changes to high-level State authorities in the past days. On 7 May the general commander of the Military Police of Paraná State resigned and in a public statement justified leaving the position due to “difficulties in the relationship with the Public Security Secretary that could not be overcome”. The teachers’ strike and the police repression in response to their protests also resulted in the change of the Secretary of Education in the State. 

On 12 May the Public Defence’s Office of Paraná State informed Amnesty International that a total of 14 people had been detained following the protest of 29 April, 12 of which are adults and two of which are under 18. The Public Defence’s Office also stated that all those detained have already been released but will face further criminal investigation for the alleged crimes of resistance, contempt, and disturbance of others’ work and quietness (perturbação do trabalho ou sossego alheio). Those detained were teachers, students or civil servants of the State. The Public Defence’s Office also informed that all those detained had their mobile phones apprehended, without judicial authorization and with no related facts that could justify such seizure, in what they called “a clear violation of their privacy”.

more

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

In 2014, Brazil witnessed thousands of protesters in the streets as the country prepared to host the football World Cup in June that year. The protests echoed huge demonstrations that took place the previous year, in which Brazilians expressed their discontent with increased public transportation costs, high World Cup spending and insufficient investment in public services. The protests in 2013, which began in São Paulo in May / June, reached an unprecedented scale, with hundreds of thousands of people participating in mass demonstrations in dozens of cities. The police response to the wave of protests since 2013 was, in many instances, violent and abusive. Hundreds were injured, including a photographer who lost his eye after being hit by a rubber bullet.

Take action

Please write immediately in Portuguese, English or your own language:

  • Urging the authorities to ensure a prompt, thorough, independent and impartial investigation into allegations of police abuse and excessive use of force towards protesters during the 29 April demonstration in Curitiba; 
  • Calling on them to ensure that all those injured receive proper medical care and those detained have full access to legal counsel of their choice; 
  • Urging them to uphold the right to peaceful assembly and not to use force against peaceful protesters. 

PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 23 JUNE 2015 TO:
Governor of the State of Paraná
Beto Richa
Praça Nossa Senhora de Salete, s/n
 Centro Cívico, Curitiba
CEP 80.530-909 
Paraná, Brazil
Salutation: Dear Governor

Public Security Secretary
Wagner Mesquita de Oliveira
Rua Deputado Mário de Barros, 1290
Ed. Caetano Munhoz da Rocha, Centro Cívico, Curitiba
CEP 80.530-280 Paraná, Brazil
Email: gabinete@sesp.pr.gov.br
Salutation: Dear Secretary

Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country.