Hundreds of Brazilian police officers and their relatives have taken part in a protest in Rio de Janeiro to demander tougher legislation for crimes against the police.
They are demanding changes in the penal code so that the killing of police officers be treated as heinous crimes.
Eighty officers were killed in the line of duty in Rio this year alone.
In most cases, they died fighting the criminal gangs that control many of the city’s shantytowns, or favelas.
During the week, protesters laid crosses on the sand of Copacabana beach with the names of the dead.
Wearing predominantly black, some 500 people staged a march on Sunday to raise awareness to the problem.
‘War in Rio’
Many argue that while police brutality gets the headlines in Brazil and abroad, violence against police officer does not get the same media attention or the required legal protection.
“We want people to understand that there is a war going on in Rio de Janeiro,” one of the protest organisers, Cpl Flavia Louzada, told Extra newspaper.
She said that the families of police officers killed in the line of duty got little financial support from the corporation.
“It takes at least four months, often more, for the families to begin receiving any benefit.”