Magazine article UN Chronicle

In Memoriam: Celso Daniel (1951-2002)

Magazine article UN Chronicle

In Memoriam: Celso Daniel (1951-2002)

Article excerpt

Like the rest of the world, I was shocked and stunned to learn of the brutal abduction and assassination of Mayor Celso Daniel in Brazil. His high-profile killing has outraged the Brazilian public, and many see it as yet another failure of the state authorities to curb violence and organized crime, with the number of kidnappings in Sao Paolo nearly quintupling in 2001. Others have speculated that the kidnapping was politically motivated. Daniel, a co-founder and political coordinator of the leftist Workers Party of Brazil, was one of several left-wing mayors who had recently received death threats. President Fernando Henrique Cardoso has pledged to wage a "war against organized crime, against banditry and against impunity".

As the Mayor of Santo Andre, an industrial municipality of greater Sao Paolo in Brazil's most populous state, Daniel was also an internationally respected proponent of participatory urban governance and social inclusion. I had met Mayor Daniel last year in Nairobi during the preparations for the General Assembly special session on the five-year review of the Habitat Agenda (Istanbul +5). …

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