Were the arrested “terrorists” in Brazil a real threat to the Olympics?

The Brazilian Federal Police arrested 10 people suspected of being terrorists on Thursday.  According to the Brazilian police they were making contacts with the Islamic State (IS) and were planning a terrorist attack during the upcoming Olympic Games, in Rio de Janeiro. In addition to that, two suspects of terrorist activities are being sought.

Also according to the police, this Brazilian group declared allegiance to the IS and had ordered arms through the Paraguayan border.

In a speech delivered in a press conference, the Minister of Justice, Alexandre Moraes, said that these terrorists were recruited by the IS via the internet and their activities were discovered through Whatsapp and Telegram communication interception.

Despite this action carried out by the Federal Police seemed to tighten up security, left leaning publications, such as the blog Brazil 247, despised it. The publication claims that this action could be seen as an act of dictatorship led by the interim president Michel Temer as it lacks consistency.

This article probably sees it as a governmental propaganda as apparently proves against the suspects are shallow. Furthermore, the online publication NexoJornal also saw these arrests with reticence, saying that they were part of a “media show” campaign and exaggerated.  On the top of that, it can be said that this happens in a country where the police constantly get involved with the arresting and death of innocents. The article also highlights the fact that this exaggerated police reaction could be seen as privacy violation.

The reaction of part of Brazilian media may show a discontent with the current political climate in the country. Being in power since May 2016, Temer’s government is seen as illegitimate by a wide portion of the Brazilian society. He got into power after the elected president, Dilma Rousseff, was impeached for manipulating the government budget, a common technique used by many of former presidents but none had been punished so far.

Image taken from Nexo Jornal

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