Brazil protests 'more localised'

Protests continue in Brazil following a week of unrest that saw a million people take to the streets to demonstrate against the government. This time the demonstrations have become more localised, calling for action on a range of social issues.

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Biggest Brazil protests so far planned for Rio tonight

Riot police chase demonstrators near the Maracana stadium four days ago. Credit: Reuters

The Spain v Tahiti Confederations Cup match at Rio's famous Maracana stadium is set to be overshadowed by a massive protest planned by Brazilians who have been staging demonstrations around the country over a host of grievances.

Police insist they will not allow protesters to disrupt the game but tonight's fixture is expected to see the most volatile clashes yet thanks to increasing mobilisation from organisers using social media.

This is despite Brazil's two biggest cities, Sao Paolo and Rio, revoking an increase in public transport fares which had initially sparked the unrest.

Brazil's Neymar 'inspired by protests' to score winner

Neymar scored a spectacular volley in the 9th minute against Mexico as Brazil progressed to the Confederations Cup semi-final. Credit: EFE

Brazilian football star Neymar scored a spectacular goal in the Confederations Cup last night after saying he had been inspired by the protests in his country's two biggest cities.

Before yesterday's match against Mexico, Neymar surprisingly spoke up in favour of the protestors, an unusual move for footballers who usually steer clear of politics.

"I'm Brazilian and I love my country. I have a family and friends who live in Brazil. For that reason, I want a Brazil which is more just, safer, healthier and more honest, which is the obligation of the government," he said on Facebook.

"The only way I can represent and defend Brazil is on the pitch, playing football. From now on, I will enter the field inspired by this movement."

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Brazilian protesters lay siege to Sao Paulo city hall

Police in the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo struggled to prevent protesters from entering city hall during mass protests last night.

Footage from local TV stations showed demonstrators smashing the windows of the building with guard rails.

Earlier in the day, tens of thousands of protesters held a largely peaceful rally outside Sao Paulo Cathedral where a puppet of the city's mayor was burned.

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Thousands of protesters march in Brazil

Demonstrators run past a blaze in Sao Paulo. Credit: Reuters

Thousands of demonstrators flooded into a square in Brazil's economic hub, Sao Paulo, for the latest in a historic wave of protests against the state of public transport, schools and other public services.

Around 50,000 protesters gathered outside Sao Paulo's City Hall building, where a small group fought police in an attempt to force their way in. Another protest sprang up in the working class Rio de Janeiro suburb of Sao Goncalo.

Mass protests continue in Brazil

Mass protests are continuing throughout Brazil, with hundreds of thousands of demonstrators converging in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte and other cities.

Authorities had hoped to avoid the sort of bloody confrontations that shocked Sao Paulo last week and the outpourings of dissent were mainly peaceful.

As many as 200,000 demonstrators march through the streets in Brazil. Credit: Reuters

The unrest was set off last week by anger over a hike in public transport fares, but protesters have moved beyond that issue to tap into widespread frustration over a heavy tax burden.

Small bands of protesters broke glass trying to get into the main congressional building in Brasilia, and some demonstrators clashed with police in Rio de Janeiro.

Protesters are converging in at least seven Brazilian cities. Credit: Reuters

Police commanders had said publicly that they would try to avoid violence, but warned they could resort to force if protesters destroyed property.

Many are angry that billions of dollars in public funds are being spent to host the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics while few improvements are made elsewhere.

A demonstrator holds a banner to protest against the cost of the World Cup. Credit: Reuters

Police fire tear gas at protesters near the Maracana

Police have fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowds as protests marred a second successive day of the Confederations Cup soccer tournament in Brazil.

Activists stage a protest against the use of public funds for stadiums. Credit: Reuters

Protesters tried to pass a police blockage outside Rio de Janeiro's Maracana stadium where Mexico were playing Italy in the tournament, a run-through event for next year's World Cup finals.

Police try to negotiate with protesters to retreat. Credit: Reuters

The activists are protesting against the costs of the World Cup but people are also angry in Rio about a local issue surrounding the cost of public transport.

Some protesters were injured as police fired tear gas into the crowds. Credit: Reuters

There were demonstrations around the country last week against public transport costs.

Protests marred the opening day of the tournament on Saturday when around 500 protesters were tear-gassed by police in Brasilia where the hosts were playing Japan.

Italy and Mexico fans arrive at Maracana stadium

Italy and Mexico fans arrived at Rio's Maracana stadium in bright costumes and high spirits ahead of their Confederations Cup match in Brazil.

Mexico fans outside the Maracana stadium. Credit: Reuters
Italy fans hold up their tickets before the match. Credit: Reuters
Mexico and Italy fans hold hands in Brazil. Credit: Reuters
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