Last Updated: Monday, 19 February 2018, 14:34 GMT

Country Reports on Terrorism 2011 - Brazil

Publisher United States Department of State
Publication Date 31 July 2012
Cite as United States Department of State, Country Reports on Terrorism 2011 - Brazil, 31 July 2012, available at: [accessed 20 February 2018]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Overview: The Brazilian government continued to support counterterrorism-related activities, including investigating potential terrorist financing, document forgery networks, and other illicit activity. Brazilian security services cooperated with U.S. authorities and other regional partners to counter terrorist threats. Operationally, security forces of the Brazilian government worked with U.S. officials to pursue investigative leads provided by U.S. authorities regarding terrorist suspects. Brazil's security services were concerned that terrorists could exploit Brazilian territory to support and facilitate terrorist attacks, whether domestically or abroad, and have focused their efforts in the areas of Sao Paulo;the Tri-Border Areas of Brazil, Argentina, and Paraguay, and Brazil, Peru, and Colombia; and along the Colombian and Venezuelan borders.

Legislation and Law Enforcement: The Chamber of Deputies (the lower house of Brazil's National Congress) was considering two counterterrorism bills pending in committee. One bill would deny visas to persons convicted or accused of a terrorist act in another country, and the other would give the Brazilian government the authority to investigate and prosecute terrorist organizations. Brazilian authorities continued to work with other concerned nations, particularly with the United States, to combat document fraud. In particular, U.S. authorities began training Brazilian airline employees to identify fraudulent documents. Since 2009, multiple regional and international joint operations with U.S. authorities have successfully disrupted a number of document vendors and facilitators, as well as related human-trafficking infrastructures.

The work of the Container Security Initiative in Santos, Brazil has continued since 2005. Brazil has achieved visible results from investments in border and law enforcement infrastructure undertaken to control the flow of goods - legal and illegal - through the Tri-Border Area (TBA) of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay, the proceeds of which could be diverted to support terrorist groups. In particular, the inspection station at the Friendship Bridge in the TBA, completed by the Brazilian customs agency (Receita Federal) in 2007, continued to reduce the smuggling of drugs, weapons, and contraband goods along the Paraguayan border.

In light of Brazil's plans to host the upcoming 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, a key focus for the Department of State's 2022 Antiterrorism Assistance program to Brazil was major event security management.

Countering Terrorist Finance: Brazil is a member of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering in South America, a FATF-style regional body (FSRB). The Brazilian government made implementation of FATF recommendations a top priority and created a working group chaired by the Ministry of Justice to incorporate these recommendations into legislation and regulation. Brazil sought to play an active leadership role in its FSRB and has offered technical assistance to Argentina to implement FATF recommendations.

Brazil has not criminalized terrorist financing in a manner that is consistent with the FATF Special Recommendation II. On October 26, the Chamber of Deputies passed an updated money laundering bill establishing stricter penalties, but a specific terrorist financing provision was not included.

Brazil monitored domestic financial operations and effectively used its Financial Intelligence Unit, the Financial Activities Oversight Council (COAF), to identify possible funding sources for terrorist groups. The Brazilian government has generally responded to U.S. efforts to identify and block terrorist-related funds. Terrorist financing is not an autonomous offense in Brazil, but it is a predicate offense to money laundering. COAF does not have the authority to unilaterally freeze assets without a court order. The FATF has recommended that COAF create a standard operating procedure for freezing funds, which COAF has prioritized but not completed.

For further information on money laundering and financial crimes, we refer you to the 2011 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR), Volume 2, Money Laundering and Financial Crimes:

Regional and International Cooperation: Brazil is a member of the Organization of American States, the Union of South American Nations, and the Southern Common Market's working group on terrorism and sub-working group on financial issues, the latter of which focuses on terrorist financing and money laundering. Brazil participated in meetings of the Organization of American States' Inter-American Committee Against Terrorism.

Search Refworld