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A resident of Rio’s Marina da Glória at Guanabara Bay, where Olympic sailing and rowing will take place, describes the state of the water quality.
USA TODAY Sports

RIO DE JANEIRO – Additional security measures announced at a news conference Monday by top officers in Rio’s state police during the Olympics will include 24-hour security for the Christ the Redeemer statue beginning on Tuesday, an additional 634 officers to reinforce favela policing units where shootouts have become routine and three surveillance blimps in Rio’s north, south and west zones.

The Rio de Janeiro state military police force, which will have 13,700 boots on the ground each day, will be responsible for Games security in conjunction with federal forces from the Justice and Defense ministries and the Brazilian intelligence agency. State police will largely not be present inside venues, except in the case of special teams for soccer matches, but will be responsible for the immediate and external perimeters of games sites. State police forces will also secure the three “live sites,” where fans can gather to watch the events broadcast and participate in cultural activities.

After at least two robberies were reported in a main tunnel that is a key transportation link for visitors arriving from Rio de Janeiro’s international airport, the state police stationed two teams of officers on up to 10 motorcycles to monitor the area. The weekend robberies, reported by Globo, led panicked drivers to abandon their cars and ended with one person shot.

“We had problems on the roadways this weekend,” Cel. Henrique Marinho of the Rio de Janeiro State Military Police said. “We will do this (extra motorcycle teams) until the end of the Olympics.”

An agitated local reporter responded: “So there’s going to be robberies again after the Olympics?”

Cel. Lima Freire said that state police have been monitoring protest activities since before the Olympic torch relay began and has up to 11 teams of crowd control police on hand.

“In case there is a need for progressive use of force with the aim of protecting the Olympic environment we will be ready to act with the aim of preserving the normal running of the Olympic events,”Freire said.

Cel. Marcelo Rocha said more than 10,000 Rio state police have been trained on detecting terrorist threats, including on identifying suspicious bags and packages, and on protocols to follow.

Cel. Edson Duarte praised the move by the Rio de Janeiro state governor to declare a state of financial calamity in June, which allowed interim President Michel Temer to open up nearly a billion dollars for the state government. Duarte said the move meant that officers will have guaranteed meals and gasoline for their cars during the Olympics.

Asked whether routine police functions would be affected by the focus on the Games, Freire said that anti-drug incursions would not stop during the Olympics.

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