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Rev Saude Publica. 2014 Feb;48(1):94-102.

[Homicides and territorial struggles in Rio de Janeiro favelas].

[Article in Portuguese]



To evaluate the risk of homicide in Rio de Janeiro's favelas, taking into account the territorial disputes taking place in the city.


The study is based on data on mortality from homicide in the city of Rio de Janeiro between 2006 and 2009. Risks in favelas and in surrounding areas were evaluated, as was the domination of armed groups and drug dealing. Geographic and ethnographic concepts and methods were employed, using participant observation, interviews and analysis of secondary data on health.


Within the favelas, mortality rates from homicide were equivalent to, or lower than, the rest of the city, although they were considerably higher in areas surrounding the favelas, especially in areas where there was conflict between armed rival gangs.


The presence of trafficking crews and turf war in strategic areas of the city increases homicide rates and promotes the "ecology of danger" in these areas.

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