News and reports from North, Central and South America.

Rio's desperate street kids fear annihilation

Thousands of homeless children in Rio de Janeiro face beatings and execution by gangs of vigilantes. Here, they explain why they can't go to the authorities…

Brazil: Soccer families seized in kidnapping wave

Brazilian football clubs are setting up security of record levels for the families of their players in the wake of the fifth high-profile kidnapping in six months…

Brazil's 'samba spokesman' dies in Rio

Bezerra da Silva, the sambista dubbed the godfather of gangsta rap and unofficial spokesman of Rio de Janeiro’s slums, has died aged 77.

Argentina mourns revellers killed in club fire

At least 175 people died and 700 were injured when a flare thrown from the audience started a fire at a concert in a Buenos Aires nightclub.

Brazil: Kidnapped footballer's mother freed

Forty-one days after her dramatic abduction, Marina Lima de Souza, the mother of Brazil’s brightest footballing star, has been freed.

Rio carnival organiser 'executed' by drugs gang

Preparations for Rio de Janeiro's dazzling carnival have been tainted by the murder of one of its organisers over his choice of parade queen.

Rio protesters oppose tax-funded 'cure' for gays

Protesters have descended on Rio's legislative assembly opposing state proposals offering to bankroll the psychological "conversion" of homosexuals.

Brazil: Football king's mother abducted

The kidnapping of a national football star's mother shows the dark underbelly of Brazil's beautiful game and its ransom-fuelled snatch squads.

Rio drugs boss murder threatens return to chaos

The assassination of a renowned Rio drugs lord throws Brazil's tourism capital into further violence with some areas on a war footing.

Defending Guantanamo's detainees against Bush

Steven Macpherson Watt, the lawyer battling the Bush administration over the detainment of ‘enemy combatants’ at Guantanamo Bay, speaks about his uphill fight for justice.


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