Brazil to Unroll Large Security Operation for Copa America
Copa America hosts Brazil will deploy snipers and sniffer dogs for the Latin American tournament kicking off Friday, as the soccer-mad country braces for the influx of thousands of fans.
Around 10,000 private guards will be used to provide security inside stadiums for the championship, while police will patrol outside as they monitor for hooligans.
"With all our experience I can guarantee that we have the conditions for a secure Copa America," Cesar Martinez, director of Integrated Operations at the justice and security ministry, told AFP.
Brazil hosted the Confederations Cup in 2013, the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games in 2016 without any major incident.
The risk of violent fans infiltrating the tournament is one of the biggest concerns for Brazil, which will stop known foreign hooligans from entering the country.
Troublesome supporters identified by border control and immigration officers will be turned back, while facial recognition technology will be deployed at games.
Argentina has provided Brazil with a list of 5,000 fans with a history of violence. The data base that includes the names of known hooligans from other countries is being "updated daily," said Martinez.
Security will be stepped up at airports, hotels, roads used foreign delegations and tourist sites.
But unlike the Olympic Games, the military will not patrol the streets of Rio de Janeiro.