Brazil to Perform Massive Operation before Confederations Cup

By Dialogo
December 20, 2012

Brazil will deploy one of its biggest military operations for border control before the Confederations Cup soccer tournament in June 2013, which will be followed by the World Cup in 2014, Minister of Defense Celso Amorim announced on December 18.

The deployment will involve about 20,000 members of the Navy, the Army and the Air Force, twice the staff used in the previous six editions of the so-called Operation Ágata.

The operation will take place “before the Confederations Cup starts, so it won’t interfere with the influx of tourists” attending the tournament, Amorim said in a statement.

Considered a rehearsal before the 2014 World Cup, the Confederations Cup will have the participation of eight continental champion soccer teams between June 15 and 30, in six of the 12 stadiums slated for the World Cup.

The troops will be mobilized in several locations along Brazil’s extensive land border to control drug and weapons’ trafficking, as well as the smuggling of goods.

The new edition of “Operation Ágata,” prior editions of which facilitated the seizure of almost 20 tons of explosives and 11 tons of narcotics, will have “mainly deterrent goals,” Amorim added.

Tens of tons of other materials have been seized in police operations to support the military.

“Operation Ágata” is part of a strategic border security plan announced by President Dilma Rousseff in June 2011.

Brazil shares a border of about 16,000 kilometers, of which 9,000 kilometers are riverside territory with Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Surinam, Uruguay, Venezuela, and French Guiana.

It represents a good test for the preparedness or not of the Brazilian organizaers for the upcoming World Cup.