Violent crime in South America

Tuesday, October 3, 2023, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. EDT

Latin America has long suffered from extraordinarily high criminal violence. The intensified competition between Mexican Sinaloa Cartel and Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación playing out across Latin America, as well as long unresolved internal drivers of criminality, have further pushed up crime rates. Even countries where previously violence was low, such as Chile and Uruguay, are experiencing new challenges, and countries such as Ecuador have become dramatic battlefields of the cartels, with violent criminality increasingly affecting politics and daily life. Meanwhile, Brazil’s criminal group, the Primeiro Comando da Capital, has graduated to the major league of Latin American criminal groups with global reach, increasingly intersecting not just with local gangs but also Mexican cartels as far away as West Africa and Europe. Security policies across the region are under strain.

On October 3, the Brookings Institution’s Initiative on Nonstate Armed Actors and the Centro de Políticas Estratégicas y Asuntos Globales of the Universidad de San Andrés will host a discussion on crime developments and security policies in Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Uruguay, and Ecuador.

Audience Q&A will follow the moderated discussion. Viewers may submit questions for speakers via email to or via Twitter using #SouthAmericaCrime.

Register to watch online:

The Brookings Institution, 1775 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036

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