BRASILIA, Brazil — Twice as many blacks as whites were murdered between 2002 and 2010 in Brazil, where African-Brazilians make up 52 percent of the population, said a government-backed study released Thursday.
The 2012 Map of Violence found that the white murder rate fell 25.5 percent during that period while murders involving blacks soared nearly 30 percent, with 272,422 people of African descent killed.
In 2010, the murder rate for blacks reached 36 per 100,000 inhabitants while that for whites stood at 15.5 percent in the country of 194 million people.
"In 2010, for each youth killed in Germany, The Netherlands, France, Poland or Britain, 144 young blacks were killed in Brazil. In some cities such as Simoes Filho, in the northeast, the figure reaches 912," said Julio Jacobo Waiselfisz, the author of the study.
Eight of Brazil's 27 federative units — 26 states and the federal district of Brasilia — had rates of 100 or more murders per 100,000 young Afro-descendants, including Brasilia and the northern states of Para, Alagoas, and Pernambuco.
Young blacks were most at risk and among those aged 21, the murder rate was 89 per 100,000 compared with 37 among whites, the study found.
"It is a real pandemic," said Waiselfisz, who insisted that despite rising national prosperity over the past decade, "we do not have the means to provide the necessary social integration."
"We have eight million young blacks who do not study, do not work and have no future prospects," he added.
"Most people are not aware that blacks are murdered more often than whites, particularly among the young, and that this could be avoided," said Racial Equality Minister Luiza Bairros. "Society has a duty to tackle this problem.”
© AFP 2013