By Jim Kouri
Brazil’s murder rate is more than four times higher than that of the U.S. and rates for other crimes are similarly high, according to a think-tank study released this week.
While U.S. government officials and members of the news media often remind Americans about the Mexican murder and crime rates, a study by the Latin American think-tank — the Sangari Institute — claims that well over one million people have been murdered in Brazil in the last 30 years.
According to the Institute’s study released this week, Brazilians experienced more murders in their country than people living in nations that are in the midst of wars and violent revolutions.
Sangari analysts claim that the number of murders in Brazil increased 259 percent in the three decades, jumping from 13,910 in 1980 to 49,932 in 2010. What’s shocking to many is the fact that Brazil has no territorial disputes, emancipation movements, or civil, religious, racial, or ethnic wars.
The murder rate rose 124 percent within the 30-year period, from 11.7 to 26.2 murders per 100,000 inhabitants.
The study reveals that between 2004 and 2007, 192,804 people died of homicide in Brazil, exceeding the 169,574 people killed in the twelve largest armed conflicts in the world during the same period.
The South American nation witnessed more frequent murders in small towns and rural areas since the mid-1990s, the report said. At the same time, during the past seven years the murder rate in Brazil’s metropolitan areas registered a continuous decrease, while the rate in rural areas increased consistently as police repression in large metro areas drove criminals to other regions, according to the study’s analysts.
“We must deploy public policies to deal with the increase in violence in rural areas, especially the border regions,” the study said.