Photo: Thousands March to Confederations Cup to Protest
Thousands of protesters marched Sunday toward Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana Stadium, the venue for the Confederation Cup final between host Brazil and Spain.
The protesters gathered at Plaza Saens Peña in Tijuca, a neighborhood about two kilometers (1.2 miles) from the stadium, and began marching amid applause from thousands of residents, an Efe reporter confirmed at the scene.
Police set up a security perimeter around the stadium, where some 70,000 people are expected to watch the match on Sunday evening.
The protesters marched to another plaza further from the stadium.
About 4,000 people participated in the march, police said.
A small group of protesters, meanwhile, occupied the construction site of the future headquarters of the Brazilian Soccer Federation in Rio de Janeiro, media reports said.
The wave of protests started over a hike in public transit fares, with demonstrators later taking to the streets to complain about the low quality of public services, health care and education, corruption, and public spending on the Confederations Cup soccer tournament and next year’s World Cup.