Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Jan 4, 2017 / 12:18 pm
A local bishop called for prayer and prison reform efforts after a 17-hour prison uprising in the Amazon city of Manaus, Brazil, left at least 56 dead.
The incident is "a very sad and apprehensive situation," said Auxiliary Bishop of Manaus, José Alburquerque de Aráujo. He asked all the people of the country to unite in prayer.
Late in the day on January 1, a riot broke out in the Anísio Jobim Prison Complex. According to authorities, the riot was caused by an internal dispute between criminal gangs inside the prison: the local group, Family of the North (FDN), massacred members of the First Command of the Capital (PCC), which is based in the south-east region of the country.
International drug trafficking is a major problem in the northern area of Brazil, where Manaus is located. Criminal gangs exert significant influence from inside prisons in the region.