Native Brazilians protest against Fifa World Cup 2014

Demonstrators rallied against reservation-reduction legislation

Click to follow
The Independent US

Around 400 people of different native Brazilian ethnicities rallied outside the Justice Ministry in the capital on Thursday, to protest against legislation planned for the FIFA World Cup 2014 which will shrink their reservations.

In images shown by the Globo TV network, demonstrators wearing tribal markings and headdresses carried bows and arrows outside the building in the capital.

While the activists temporarily blocked the four entrances to the ministry in an attempt to gain the attention of Justice Minister Eduardo Cardozo, the demonstration was peaceful, Sgt. Daniel Barroso, a spokesman for the Brasilia police department confirmed.

The action was the second this week in the capital Brasilia by indigenous the population, and comes weeks before the Fifa World Cup begins on 12 June.

On Tuesday, the same group had armed themselves with bows and fired a few arrows at police officers mounted on horses - one of which hit an officer in the leg.

Two protesters were also injured, according to Globo, but the exact details of the incident or their condition after were unclear.

The clashes caused the cancellation of a ceremony just outside the new stadium where the football tournament will be hosted, and where the World Cup trophy was to be exhibited.

Demonstrators rallying against the expense of the tournament joined the indigenous protesters on Tuesday. They voiced concerns that the billions being spent on the tournament should have gone to improving Brazil's public services.

Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff has previously warned that the government will call in troops if necessary to prevent protests disrupting the football games next month.

Additional reporting by AP