On Sunday, July 9, one person was killed and three others were wounded in violence following the Vasco da Gama-Flamengo rivalry soccer match in Rio de Janeiro. One man was fatally shot at the stadium entrance, while two others were transported to a local hospital for gunshot wounds, with eyewitnesses stating that a police officer had fired at the fans.
The violence started after fans attempted to rush the field following the end of the match, while police responded by firing teargas. Fans reportedly threw home-made bombs and other objects onto the field, preventing Flamengo's players from entering the locker room. Outside of the stadium, Vasco de Gama fans clashed with police, with eyewitnesses stating that they heard multiple shots fired.
The Vasco de Gama-Flamengo rivalry is considered the most intense soccer rivalry in Rio de Janeiro.
Brazil's organized soccer fans, Torcidas Organizadas (TOs), are known for being among the most violent soccer fans in the world. TOs in Brazil are also known to be intertwined with organized crime organizations. On March 13, a large brawl broke out during a match between Vasco da Gama and Brasiliense that involved players, fans, and military police.
Individuals are advised to remain vigilant surrounding sports events and to refrain from attending soccer matches due to the risk of violence, which can erupt with little to no notice.
More generally, individuals present in Rio de Janeiro are advised to conceal signs of wealth to avoid attracting the attention of would-be thieves and avoid entering favelas (slums; often located in very close proximity to more affluent neighborhoods). Keep in mind that criminals are often armed; never offer resistance if confronted by a potential mugger.
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