Several Brazillian police officers suffered injuries as citizens’ protest during Saturday’s Confederations Cup match between Brazil and Italy escalated to violence.
Locals have staged demonstrations against the Brazilian government’s funding of the eight-way World Cup dress rehearsal, in addition to the tournament actual in 2014 and the subsequent Olympics in 2016.
The security threat to the host nation’s final group game against the Azzurris had been aggravated to a point that officials were forced to deploy military enforcement in and around Mineirao.
Proceedings kicked off in an atmosphere of relative peace, nevertheless, as the home supporters initially celebrated their team’s goals in the 4-2 demolition of Cesare Prandelli’s men to top Group A.
However, reports on local radio of the onrushing of a demonstration numbering 100,000 strong headed for the stadium from Belo Horizonte – the surrounding locale – incited a frenzy.
Around 3,000 protesters directly engaged the police outside the complex.
Authorities surrounding the stadium were bombarded by a myriad of objects ranging from rocks to crude bombs.
Five policemen are estimated to have sustained injuries resulting from the assaults, adding to the dozens of civilian casualties and pair of deaths that have been inflicted so far.
Brazil’s President, Dilma Rousseff, had appealed for the protesters to disengage in a television broadcast on Friday, citing funding for the World Cup was not drawn from tax income.
Fifa, the competition’s organisers, has decided against postponing the remaining fixtures, despite reports claiming that a participating nation has requested for such.