World Bulletin / News Desk
Representatives form the Black Lives Matter movement in the U.S. on Wednesday raised their voices in Brazil to prevent potential racial and police violence at the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Six representatives hope to hold several meetings with community leaders, anti-racism activists and families of local victims of police violence during the group’s four-day visit to the country.
Representatives at a meeting Wednesday shared their personal stories and discussed the similarities between the black experience in Brazil and in the United States, according to The Associated Press.
The group was created in the United States after the high-profile killing of unarmed black teen Trayvon Martin at the hands of a white neighborhood watchman in 2012.
The group said it fears potential deadly clashes between blacks and authorities in Rio with the deployment of 85,000 officers to secure the games.
Police killings in Rio has steadily increased with Amnesty International saying more than 2,500 people killed in the state since 2009, when the International Olympic Committee chose the city to host the Olympic and Paralympics Games.
During the 2014 World Cup, operations to secure cities hosting football matches left at least 580 dead and police-related shooting deaths increased 40 percent, the rights group said.
Last May, police killed 40 people, 90 percent more than the same period last year, the Public Security Institute of Brazil said.
“The intersection of what’s happening in the United States and what’s happening in Rio during the Olympics preparations is just a heartbreaking indication of the globalization of police brutality and lethality,” Liz Martin, founder of the U.S-based Brazil Police Watch, told the Telesur news outlet when the group announced last week that it would visit Brazil with Black Live Matter.