AMAZONLOG 2017: Military Exercise in Amazon, Joined by Troops from Several Countries

AMAZONLOG 2017: Military Exercise in Amazon, Joined by Troops from Several Countries

By Luciano Nascimento
Agência Brasil

Image Attribute: Vehicles and equipment needed to set up the logistics exercise in transit to Tabatinga.  / Photo: AMAZONLOG 2017

Image Attribute: Vehicles and equipment needed to set up the logistics exercise in transit to Tabatinga.  / Photo: AMAZONLOG 2017

Brazil's federal government should give more attention to and strengthen surveillance efforts in the country's tri-border areas to bolster the fight against the traffic of guns and drugs. The statement was made by Saul Bemerguy, mayor of the town of Tabatinga, 1.1 thousand km away from Manaus, capital of Amazonas, the biggest state in the Brazilian Amazon Forest. The town can only be reached by boat or plane.

The town, located on the triple frontier shared by Brazil, Peru, and Colombia, has staged an international humanitarian aid simulation in the Amazon region—known as AmazonLog17—which started with medical care services offered to the local population. The exercise is slated to end on November 13.

Some 2000 people are taking part in the simulation from the armies of Brazil, Colombia, and Peru, in addition to the military personnel from the US, Germany, Russia, Canada, Venezuela, France, the UK, and Japan.

About 50 U.S. personnel will be present for the exercise, including 19 observers and 31 members of the Montana Air National Guard who will be based out of Manaus providing air transportation, a U.S. embassy statement said.

The event aims to promote more coordinated efforts by institutions in case of natural disasters and accidents, in addition to providing training for agents in the Armed Forces.

Drug Trafficking Routes


The triple frontier area, comprising the towns of Tabatinga (Brazil), Letícia (Colombia), and Santa Rosa (Peru), is considered by the Brazilian government a key gateway for the trafficking of cocaine in the country's northern region.

If more attention were given to frontier areas, Mayor Bemerguy further argued, there would be less need for the deployment of the Armed Forces and the police in operations such as the one being conducted Tuesday (7) in favelas in São Gonçalo, outside city of Rio de Janeiro.

“Congress members and the government should better regard the region and become more familiar with the frontier area because police officers are dying in the state capitals, but things come here first—guns, drugs, everything. If there's no infrastructure or security here, then it's over. We can't put an end to this by ourselves,” he said.

Another concern expressed by the mayor is the excessive demand for public services, as is the case with health care. “This is a unified area encompassing nine municipalities in Amazonas state, but that's not all; they add up to 25 cities altogether, because there's also Peru and Colombia. And when someone shows up at a health care station, nationality's not an issue. It's life that counts.”

Triple Frontier


Brazil has a total of nine tri-border areas, most of which in the North, totaling 9,762 km including the country's frontiers with Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, and Bolivia. The advance of organized crime is among the authorities' main concerns, despite the 21000 military personnel in the region today.


Translated by Fabrício Ferreira | Edited by: Maria Claudia / Nira Foster
(c) 2017 Empresa Brasil de Comunicação S/A - EBC
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