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A new decree by the governor of Rio de Janeiro authorizing spending cuts ahead of the 2016 Olympic Games must not be used as an excuse to cut short basic services and training for security forces to be deployed in favelas, Amnesty International said.

“The decision to cut down on social services and security ahead of the Rio Olympics is not only shocking but incredibly worrying, particularly given Rio’s utterly poor record when it comes to homicides and police killings,” said Atila Roque, Brazil Director at Amnesty International. 

“What Rio needs is not less but more investment to ensure security forces that will be deployed across the state are properly trained to prevent the kind of human rights violations we have been documenting for years.”

“This is not the time to hide behind numbers. Authorities in Rio de Janeiro have a responsibility to keep its people safe. Failing to take this responsibility seriously will only end up in more pain and suffering.”