Protesters Block Olympic Torch Route in Brazil

Some residents are angry that federal funds are being spent on the Olympics

The passage of the Olympic torch through a southeastern Brazilian city was cut short Wednesday as police clashed with protesters who oppose the spending of federal funds on the Rio Games.

Residents in the coastal town of Angra dos Reis, outraged over cuts to public services and delayed salary payments to federal workers, took to the streets in the Japuiba borough and blocked the torch relay route, according to Brasil's TV OGlobo. [[377968171, C]]

Protesters carried signs and shouted slogans as they confronted law enforcement officials escorting the torch, Rio's local news agency EXTRA reported. Some of demonstrators began throwing rocks at police, who responded with rubber bullets, tear gas and pepper spray, according to EXTRA. At least one child was hospitalized, but her condition was unknown, OGlobo reported.

Videos posted on social media purport to show the torch extinguished as the runner carrying the Olympic symbol is escorted to safety by riot police. [[388591302, C]]

In recent months, Angra dos Reis has endured funding cuts that forced a local hospital to close in March and suspended the municipality's public transportation system, leaving residents without cars stranded.

One of the demonstrators wrote on social media that residents were not "revolting against the torch, but with the government that has done nothing in four years, yet made over the city in three days," Sidney Pinheiro wrote on Facebook, EXTRA reported.

On Thursday, the torch will travel through the northwest municipalities of Ilha Grande and Volta Redonda in Rio de Janeiro.

Contact Us