Brazil’s Security Forces Cooperate to Fight Drug Trafficking in the Tri-Border Amazon

first_img“In special cases [of suspicious boats], we also stop boats navigating in the opposite direction,” Oliveira said. Specifically, 70% of the narcotics that enter the Amazonas come in through the Solimões River. To stop them, Troops and police officers launch missions from the Anzol Base, located about 50 kilometers from Tabatinga, where the ferries BA-1 and BA-2 have been docked since the base opened on September 18. The BA-1 is used by nearly 30 police officers to inspect boats and passengers 24 hours a day from its station on the river’s right shore. The BA-2, meanwhile, is used by 15 Soldiers who alternate between two shifts on the left bank. Security forces use technology and trained canines Brazil’s Army, Federal Police, and Amazonas state security forces are working together to combat the flow of drugs entering the country from the tri-border Amazon region where Brazil, Colombia, and Peru converge. Alto Huallaga, located in the country’s northwest, is one of Peru’s largest cocaine-producing regions, while Vale do Javari encompasses parts of Brazil, Colombia, and Peru and is home to numerous cocaine plantations. Two Brazilian Army platoons cover that area: the Estirão do Equador Fourth Special Border Platoon (PEF) and the Palmeira do Javari Special Border Platoon. Security authorities constructed the Anzol Base close to the confluence of the Solimões and the Javari rivers, a location used to transport the majority of cocaine that’s produced in the Alto Huallaga and Vale do Javari areas. The location of the base, near the city of Tabatinga and between two islands on the Solimões, is significant because it allows authorities to use the power plant operated by the Amazonas Electric Company and decreases the chances of boats carrying contraband to evade authorities.center_img By Dialogo November 23, 2015 Brazil is falling apart. People are turning into zombies. Drugs are the worst enemy to society. “Because water routes are the primary means of transportation in the region, almost all of the illicit drugs produced in Peru and Colombia are transported on the Solimões River,” said Alexandre Silveira de Oliveira, Regional Executive Deputy for the Office of the Superintendent of the Federal Police in Amazonas. In that effort, security forces inspected 622 boats on the Solimões River during September – an average of 20 a day – in addition to interviewing or searching nearly 4,800 passengers. Every vessel that navigates the Solimões from Tabatinga to Manaus will continue to be stopped and inspected, except for Navy vessels and boats protected by international treaties. Forces bolster security by using sniffer dogs to find drugs and explosives, and units assigned to BA-1 have equipment that helps them conduct nighttime inspections, record images from the river, and transmit data over the Internet, which allows its personnel to support other police squads’ activities. Additionally, Military and law enforcement personnel at the Anzol Base also combat the illicit smuggling of merchandise and the illegal exploitation of mines thanks to the support expert technicians and intelligence service members. “Our specific mission is to intercept boats that try to evade inspection by BA-1, primarily during the night shift,” said Lieutenant Colonel Marcos Vieira Santana, commanding officer of the Solimões Border Command/8th Jungle Infantry Battalion. “We have a Guardian boat outfitted with two engines and weapons, which provides ideal conditions to fulfill our mission.” last_img read more

Stokes and Hales named in England one-day squad for Australia

first_imgLONDON, England (Reuters) – Ben Stokes has been included in England’s one-day squad for the five-match series in Australia despite being under suspension.Stokes is currently unable to play for his country pending a decision on whether to charge him in connection with an altercation outside a Bristol nightclub in September.But he has been named in the 16-man squad for the ODI series starting next month after selectors were given “clear guidance to name their strongest squad”.He is joined by Alex Hales, who was also suspended after the Bristol incident but has since been told he can play for England after police confirmed he would not face criminal charges.Both players could yet face disciplinary action by the England and Wales Cricket Board.But with Stokes’ situation still not determined, he may not feature in the five-match one-day series, let alone the current Ashes series.The England all-rounder is currently in New Zealand, where he is playing for Canterbury after being granted dispensation by the ECB.With no decision yet made on whether to prosecute him, his chances of featuring in the Ashes, which has three Tests remaining, are diminishing.“Should the ECB Board receive formal confirmation that Ben Stokes has either been charged or that he will face no charges, they would convene within 48 hours to make a decision on his availability for the team at that stage,” the ECB said.Also in the one-day squad are Kent batsman Sam Billings and Yorkshire’s David Willey, who is selected ahead of Essex’s Ravi Bopara.The first one-day international is in Melbourne on January 14.England squad: Eoin Morgan (Middlesex) (capt.), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire), Jake Ball (Nottinghamshire), Sam Billings (Kent), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Tom Curran (Surrey), Alex Hales (Nottinghamshire), Liam Plunkett (Yorkshire), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), Ben Stokes (Durham), David Willey (Yorkshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham).last_img read more

Smith undecided where Origin legend will end

first_imgAnd as the Queensland skipper prepares to reach that milestone tonight Petero Civoniceva says it is a feat unlikely to ever be repeated.A debutant in Game Three of the 2003 series, Smith’s run of featuring in 39 of the past 40 Origin matches played was interrupted only by an elbow injury that prevented him from playing in the opening game of the 2010 series.Given that Johnathan Thurston will step down from representative football at the end of the year with a maximum of 38 games for Queensland and Jarryd Hayne has the most appearances of active New South Wales players with 20, only Greg Inglis (30) and Darius Boyd (26) could conceivably match Smith’s achievement in the next five years.Civoniceva, who played 33 matches for Queensland, believes it will be a long time before we see any other player reach such a number and paid tribute to Smith’s longevity in becoming the first to 40.”You could tell from day one that he had this huge future in the game,” Civoniceva told NRL.com.”He was a bit of a freak in terms of his fitness and in being calm under pressure and all those champion qualities that he possesses.”You can’t play in the middle without some level of toughness but not just physically also mentally.”We’ve seen the way he can control a game and the way he can slow things down and that overall resilience that he possesses, that’s what’s most impressive.”He just seems to be able to play at a different speed to everyone else, seeing things differently and reading the game like no other.”I think it’s going to be a long while before we see a champion of his calibre come through again.”You’re talking about someone starting at quite a young age and then being able to be consistent enough to retain their position for over a decade; that’s a big expectation to put on a player.”When you break down the number of games he’s played in club, state and national rep honours and you compare that to the average player and the fact that he has been captain at all those levels as well, it’s pretty amazing what he’s been able to achieve.”When new records of longevity are being established it is only natural to look forward to where they may potentially end.If the Storm skipper completes his 15th Origin series this year he will have 42 games to his name along with the 50 Tests he has played for his country and 346 games in the NRL, with Darren Lockyer’s mark for all-time premiership appearances on track to fall in Round 25.Smith’s performances at all levels give no indication of a player who is eyeing off the end and with a year still to run on his contract with Melbourne the soon-to-be 34-year-old says a decision on his representative future won’t be made until after the World Cup at the end of the year.”At this stage I feel really good, both physically and mentally,” Smith said.”I love playing representative football. I’ll have a clearer picture at the end of the year about what I want to do… I’m contracted to Melbourne so I’m playing again.”I’m 35 next year. There’s a lot of footy if you are playing all the rep stuff.”I’m not saying (I’ll stand down) and I am really keen to play on. But I think I’ll have a clearer idea at the end of the season. It’s a big year, close to 40 matches.”He need only look around this week in camp to know that the make-up of the Queensland team is undergoing a generational change.Smith will captain Queensland for the 19th time on Wednesday night without the likes of Thurston, Greg Inglis and Matt Scott by his side and with Cooper Cronk’s playing future undecided it could be a dramatically different-looking Maroons line-up in 12 months’ time.Despite the generational change Smith says he doesn’t feel any extra pressure to play on if he doesn’t believe he can continue to compete in the game’s toughest arenas.”None of us know how long we’ve got left, really,” said Smith, who will take on the goal-kicking duties in Thurston’s absence.”Only Johnathan has put an end date on it. Cooper’s future is up in the air as well. Next year there could be half the side gone and we’ve got a new team.”I don’t feel any pressure to stay around and help those guys through. I like to think in my past 39 matches I’ve put the team in a good position to move forward.”Every player knows when it’s time to finish. I’m yet to make that decision.”Even after 39 Origin matches for Queensland and six man-of-the-match awards Smith says there will be still butterflies in the stomach when he boards the bus to make the trip into Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday evening but that once the whistle goes game No.40 will be just like all the ones that have preceded it.”When you walk out of the hotel and get onto the bus, you get a bit nervous and everyone is going mad waving out of their car windows. But once we get to the ground, it is business as usual,” he said.”I’m not sitting here and patting myself on the back but I do understand it’s a fairly significant milestone.”I remember Petero Civoniceva telling me after 10 games that I could be the first bloke to play 40 Origins. I just laughed and shook my head and said, ‘Nobody will ever do that’.”It’s a really nice achievement to have. Without playing it down, I’m very proud of being able to play that amount of games. My family are proud as well.”Let’s just hope I can go out and play well.”last_img read more