Military police officers and fire fighters in Ceará state are on strike as of Tuesday, February 25. The security personnel launched their strike on Tuesday, February 18, to demand better working conditions and in protest of a proposed salary readjustment by the government. On Friday, February 21, state officials suspended 167 officers for 120 days for participating in the illegal industrial action. To maintain security and order in Ceará, the federal government deployed 2500 additional soldiers to the state, along with over 350 national police officers.
Crime rates in Ceará have reportedly increased during the strike despite the additional security forces deployed to the area. According to media reports, at least 170 people have been murdered as of February 25, since the start of the work stoppage. A rise in robberies and other violent crimes has also been reported, particularly after annual carnival celebrations began on Saturday, February 22.
A heightened security presence and increased security measures are anticipated throughout Ceará state over the coming days.
Individuals in Ceará state are advised to monitor developments to the situation, remain vigilant, follow all instructions issued by local authorities, and exercise basic security precautions (e.g. keep signs of wealth concealed, drive with doors locked and windows rolled up, etc.).
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