By Brennan Stark, Contributing Reporter

SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – An estimated 300 Military Police accompanied by police helicopters began forcibly removing student protesters from the University of São Paulo (USP) at 5:10AM this morning.  Around sixty students have detained thus far.

Students at the University of São Paulo began protesting against a constant Military Police presence, Brazil News
Students at the University of São Paulo began protesting against a constant Military Police presence on campus early last Wednesday, photo by JF Diorio/Agência Estado.

USP students began occupying the Faculty of Philosophy, Letters and Science (FFLCH) building, which houses the university president’s office, last Wednesday, November 1st.

The protest was sparked several days after a violent confrontation with police, reportedly during the arrest of three students for marijuana possession.

They had been demanding a reevaluation of university lawsuits against students, and an end to the regular Military Police presence on campus which started about two months ago.

The police presence was set into motion after the death of Felipe Ramos de Paiva, a 24 year-old USP student murdered on campus on May 18th this year.

The student protesters had been given until 11PM Monday night to vacate the building, but an estimated 350 chose to stay.  Frustrations and anxieties intensified after the deadline, with reports of some students to begin pelting journalists in the area with sticks and stones.

The university had held negotiations with students and employees over the weekend and yesterday afternoon, but ultimately rejected their demands for removing the police presence.

In 2007, university students occupied the same building for 55 days.

Read more (in Portuguese).

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  1. There must be more to this than what is reported. Why are the students so against MP presence? They fear the MP’s for some reason?

  2. The MP was responsible during the military dictatorship in Brazil for arresting and torturing students and everybody else against them. That’s why student are afraid of the MP.

  3. I think students aren´t afraid of MP, they just don´t want the police presence, because if there is police, they can´t use drugs in the campus.

  4. In my opinion there´s no reason to protest against something that´s illegal and it went too far when they invaded the director´s office and stayed 55 days there.

  5. The students are afraid because MP are really rude, but this doesn’t mean they are right because smoking marijuana is illegal in Brazil.

  6. The students should protest without destroying the building of the university, because they are only making the situation worse. They must protest in a passive way.

  7. you asked why students fear MP. But it is not only a question of fear, because it is simply not legal that MP occupies the campus, no matter in which country or which university!

    Solidarity with the Brasilian Students!!!! EDUCATION IS NOT A PRIVILEQUE BUT A HUMAN RIGHT.

    students of Humboldt Universität Berlin

  8. Thank you for your support!
    We are not protesting to use marijuana in the Campus!
    We are protesting, as jette explaned, because it’s ilegal to the MP to occupie the campus!
    Free thinking doesn’t goes with a police force that is not prepared to deal with social and political moviments! Wich happens all the time in all important universities.
    And did you know the the São Paulo’s MP kills more then all the USA police forces together? Off course we fear them! We live in a police state. Or haven’t you seen the way they get into the favelas in Rio, shooting everything that moves, as if it was Counter-Strike?


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