Americas

News and reports from North, Central and South America.

Rio kids caught in drugs war crossfire

Parents at an upmarket school in Rio's embattled Rochinha district want its owners to relocate so their children are not killed in the raging drugs war that surrounds it.

Brazil drugs battle leaves three dead

An attempted invasion of Rio de Janeiro's largest favela by rival drug traffickers on Good Friday left at least three civilians dead and wounded scores of others.

Brazil holiday capital sees sun, sea and shootouts

Clashes between police and slum-dwellers turn Rio de Janerio's world-famous beach neighbourhood of Copacabana into a war zone.

Rio suburb faces drugs war showdown

As City of God - a film depicting wars between rival drug gangs in Rio de Janeiro - receives four Oscar nominations, a real life version is taking place in the city.

Pioneering Brazilian writer Queiroz dies

Rachel de Queiroz, grand dame of the Brazilian literary community, passed away quietly this week. A published author at 20, Queiroz was a remarkable novelist, playwright, raconteur and columnist.

Rio de Janeiro mounts 'war on terror'

Gunfights between police and gangs in a bustling Brazilian 'favela' see students at Rio's neighbouring 'American School' running for cover.

US air quality is the pits

As new statistics show 133 million Americans are breathing in harmful exhaust fumes, President Bush amends a law that critics say will only inflame the growing health crisis.

Haiti: Forgotten remnant of black history?

The world's first black independent state is gearing up for its 200th birthday. But as Haiti's pioneering history is overshadowed by its contemporary crisis, is there anything left to party about?

Brazil: A global deadbeat?

International organisations to which Brazil belongs are not being paid. Rent for overseas offices is not being met and bill payments for running costs are late.

Five million children working in Brazil

It's all work and no play for five-and-a-half million kids in Brazil, but improvements are continuing to be made, officials say…

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