Brazilian reporter attacked by plainclothes cops during student protest

A Brazilian journalist was beaten and his memory card stolen by alleged plainclothes police while covering the repression of a student protest in the city of Teresina, capital of the state of Piauí in the evening of Jan. 10, reported the website O Dia.

O Dia reporter Cícero Portela was photographing police violence against demonstrators when men in black t-shirts attacked him. The aggressors grabbed the camera out of Portela's hands and took out its memory card, saying that the images would harm the police if published, reported the newspaper Diário de Teresina. This was the seventh day of protests over the rise in tuition and integration into the city's public transportation system.

Two military police officers were present during the attack and did nothing to stop it. Portela filed a police report with the city's First District Police.

Portela was not the only journalist hassled at the protest. Other press workers were also the target of police violence, according to the website 180 Degrees.

The Union of Journalists of Piauí released a statement condemning the police's violent actions against journalists covering the protest, reported the website Vermelho. "It's a sad that acts of censorship and aggression by the police against freedom of the press still happen," the union stated.