Espírito Santo: Residents of the state capital stage Peace Walk
Residents have been mired in fear since military police stopped
Published in 13/02/2017 - 12:43 By Ana Cristina Campos reports on the scene for Agência Brasil - Vitória, Espírito Santo
Residents of Vitória, Espírito Santo, staged a Peace Walk on Sunday (Feb. 12) along Camburi beach. With posters, T-shirts, and white balloons, they called for a return to normalcy following a nine-day military police stoppage in the state.
As police gradually got back to work—there were 875 officers patrolling the streets of the state by Sunday—and with Armed Forces and National Public Security Force reinforcements, the residents reported they felt safer to get back to their regular activities and going out on the street.
According to Vitória Major Luciano Rezende, the demonstration aimed to bring families back to the city's public spaces.
The mayor said local schools, health centers, and public services were going to resume most of their activities on Monday (Feb. 13). “We should be getting gradually back to normal. The presence of more than 5,000 people here [at the march] shows that this is a sentiment we all share—we want to move on with our lives,” he added.
Back to normal
Beaches, bars and restaurants were more bustling with people this weekend. Despite concerns, the locals have begun to go show up out of home more.
Carlos Henrique Ribeiro and Camila Lélis, a couple with their 2-year-old granddaughter Ana Júlia, joined the Peace March as an attempt to regain the feeling of peace they always used to have in Vitória. “I'm feeling pretty at ease, I've even brought my granddaughter with me,” said Ribeiro, a state prosecutor. He was off work last week because court and prosecution services faced shutdowns.
Eliete Bermudes, a 66-year-old retired civil police officer, said she still felt unsafe to leave home. “I think one of them has to give in. Neither the governor nor police will, and the population is caught in the crossfire. I thing both sides are wrong,” she said.
The wives and mothers of military police officers are still camping in front of the barracks locking vehicles and officers in as they demand better pay for their husbands and children.
The state Civil Police Union reported 142 people were killed in the state between February 4 (Saturday) and 10 am yesterday (12) . Violent killings reached a peak of 40 last Monday (6).
Translated by Mayra Borges
Fonte: Espírito Santo: Residents of the state capital stage Peace Walk
Edition: Valéria Aguiar / Nira Foster