BOPE (Batalhao de Operacoes Policias Especias) stands for Special Police Operation Battalion. They are the elite unit operating in Brazil to counter domestic terrorism and armed criminals. They operate in the Favelas (Rio De Janeiro’s slums) and are adept at close quarters urban warefare. Their list of roles is extensive.
- Providing additional security at special events
- Break barricades constructed by drug dealers
- Shoot to kill at any criminal threatening both civilian or member life
- Exterminate drug trafficking criminal factions and all of its members
- Extract police officers or civilians injured in confrontations and combats
- Rescuing officers and citizens captured by criminals or endangered by gunfire
- Serve high-risk arrest warrants
- Hostage rescue
- Stabilizing situations involving high-risk suicidal subjects
- Suppress prison riots at any cause
- Support civil police in combats of any kind
- Providing superior assault firepower in certain situations
- Armed patrols around the favelas
- Special missions in swamps or mountainous terrains such as reconnaissance, planning and infiltration
- Engage in combat serving state sovereignty
- Crime suppression to minimum
- Resolving high-risk situations with a minimum loss of life, injury, or property damage
- Engage strongly armed criminal factions
The first role is what they are being tasked for the upcoming World Cup on June 12. The fear of Football hooligans is quite real.
According to the Daily Mail:
Carrying M16 and M4 carbine rifles with laser sights, Taurus PT92 pistols and fragmentation and stun grenades the squad have in the past also dealt with armed drug dealers who are known to operate from the city’s impoverished favelas.
Fans traveling to Brazil for the World Cup have been warned to remain aware of their surroundings, with kidnappings as a major pinpoint. Fans have also been warned to steer clear of any hooliganism, which usually runs rampant with the sport in other countries.
“If hooligans drink a lot of calpirinhas – our national cocktail – and does something crazy, BOPE are the ones that will deal with him,” Lieutenant Colonel Joao Soares Busnello told the Daily Mail. “BOPE will also be called if someone is taken hostage or there is a terrorist act or a political or religious riot.”