Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Brazil’s World Cup Evictions: an Insult to Soccer

In the early morning hours on January 7, Brazilian city officials arrived in the favela slum of Metrô-Mangueira in Rio de Janeiro to forcibly evict the families living there. In total 12 homes, some of which still had their residents’ belongings inside, were demolished, sending tremors throughout the neighborhood. When the outraged residents took to the streets in protest, police fired pepper spray, tear gas, and rubber bullets as protesters returned fire with rocks and bottles.

This particular favela is located less than half a mile from Macarana Stadium, where the final World Cup match will be played this summer.

So far, thousands of people have been forcibly removed from their homes in Rio de Janeiro. According to city law, victims of forced evictions must be relocated close to their previous homes. But many are being relocated to the outskirts of the city, far away from their previous residences. And the compensation packages of $22,000 for families forced to relocate have been described as inadequate for a country where real estate prices are rising rapidly.

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