Girl shot dead amid Brazil slum violence

Soldiers and drug traffickers clash in Rio de Janeiro's Alemao flavela, leaving 15-year-old dead and 16 people injured.

     Clashes continue following weeks of violence between slum residents and soldiers [EPA]

    Dozens of drug traffickers have opened fire on Brazilian soldiers who were patrolling a slum in Rio de Janeiro in an attempt to regain control of the massive Alemao favela, authorities said.

    A 15-year-old girl was killed and at least 16 people were reported injured during the shooting on Tuesday which broke out around 7pm local time.

    Hundreds of soldiers were sent into the community of around 100,000 people to prevent a gang from a neighbouring slum to take over the community police units set up in several points across the favela.

    Brazilian media reported that around 50 drug heavily armed traffickers from a nearby slum raided police units
    and shot at street lamps, leaving many streets in the dark. 

    An unidentified woman, the aunt of the girl who was shot in the head and died during the raid, complained about the lack of security a police operation in the area last year. 

    "I'm very angry because I was born and raised here and no one in my family has ever been killed in shootings and now that it has been pacified I'm seeing one of them be killed," she said. 

    "Where is the state? Where are the authorities."

    The woman said Ana Lucia da Silva, 15, was arriving from school when she was killed by stray bullet.

    The Alemao slum is the second of many slums 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 that will host the 2016 Olympic Games.

    Occupying the Alemao slum 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.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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