Brazilian soldiers try to regain control of massive favela complex in Rio

As Brazilians celebrate de countries’ Independence Day – a national holiday – the Brazilian forces try to regain control of one of Brazil’s large favelas, Alemao Complex in Rio, a shantytown pacified as part of the efforts to secure the city for the 2016 Olympic Games.

Dozens of drug traffickers have opened fire yesterday on soldiers who were patrolling the favela in an attempt to regain control of the slum, officials stated. Hundreds of soldiers were sent into the community of around 100,000 people to prevent a gang from a neighboring shantytown to take over the community police units set up in several points across the favela.

The community reports a 15-year-old girl was killed by a stray bullet and at least 16 people were reported wounded during the shooting yesterday which broke out last evening.

Local media also reported that over 50 drug heavily armed traffickers from a close by favela raided police units and shot at street lamps, leaving many streets in the dark. This morning, police disarmed five homemade bombs placed on the community entrances. No new clashes were reported.

The Alemao Complex one of Brazil’s largest slums and is the second of many shantytown that were retaken by Rio police following weeks of widespread violence caused by gangs who had gone on the rampage, setting fire to around 100 cars and buses in the city..

Occupying the Alemao shantytown was the biggest challenge yet for security forces that have been engaged in pushing drug gangs out of slums and installing permanent community police to pacify the crime-ridden favelas.

Brazilian authorities are struggling to pacify Rio before it hosts the finals of the 2014 World Cup and the Olympic Games of 2016.


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