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Police conduct large anti-drug operation in Rio de Janeiro’s largest slum


Brazil’s security forces have conducted a large-scale operation against drug dealers in Rio de Janeiro’s largest shantytown.

Around 300 forces, including the special operations battalion, took part in the operation in Rocinha, Brazil’s largest favela (slum), in the early hours of Tuesday to counter the return of drug lords to the slum.

Police said a violent shooting broke out between police and criminals, but none of the residents was hurt.

Authorities arrested 28 people but released at least two suspects after taking them to the police station.

Rocinha and dozens of other favelas in Rio were part of the pacification program launched by authorities in 2008 to drive out armed gangs ahead of the 2014 World Cup and the Olympic Games that the city will host in 2016.

Situated above some of Rio’s most exclusive residential districts, Rocinha was long under control of one of Brazil’s most-wanted drug lords, Antônio Bonfim Lopes, who was captured in November 2011 for heading a cocaine-trafficking organization.

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