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Rio de Janeiro, Brazil slum sees shootouts

February 17, 2014

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Police in Rio de Janeiro are reinforcing patrols in the Brazilian city’s biggest slum after a weekend of shootouts.

The Rocinha shantytown was tense Monday after seeing multiple battles the day before. Police say the violence began as shootings between members of rival drug gangs.

More clashes happened as police arrived to confront the suspects. At least two police were injured and one suspected trafficker died.

Rocinha is among Rio’s “pacified” slums. In 2011, police entered and pushed the ruling drug gang out, and set up a permanent post.

Police in several such slums have come under fire. Officers say gangs are trying to recapture their drug-selling turf.

The slum pacification program is a key element of Rio’s security plans ahead of this year’s World Cup and the 2016 Olympics.

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