Concept

Death squad

Summary
A death squad is an armed group whose primary activity is carrying out extrajudicial killings or forced disappearances as part of political repression, genocide, ethnic cleansing, or revolutionary terror. Except in rare cases in which they are formed by an insurgency, domestic or foreign governments actively participate in, support, or ignore the death squad's activities. Death squads are distinct from assassination from their permanent organization and the larger number of victims (typically thousands or more) who may not be prominent individuals. Other violence, such as rape, torture, arson, or bombings may be carried out alongside murders. They may comprise a secret police force, paramilitary militia groups, government soldiers, policemen, or combinations thereof. They may also be organized as vigilantes, bounty hunters, mercenaries, or contract killers. When death squads are not controlled by the state, they may consist of insurgent forces or organized crime, such as the ones use
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