A stray bullet grazed the neck of a 7-year-old boy near a site in Sao Paulo where thousands of Brazilian and international soccer fans had gathered to watch a large-screen broadcast of Brazil playing Mexico, police said late Tuesday.
Police said Wednesday they are investigating the cause of the shooting. No one else was hurt and the hospital where the boy was being treated says his wound was not life-threatening.
Meanwhile fist fights broke out between Australian, Dutch and Brazilian fans that had gathered near bars and restaurants of Porto Alegre, a day before The Netherlands and Australia were to meet in the Estadio Beira-Rio there on Wednesday at 12 p.m. ET.
READ MORE: Civil strife all part of the game in Brazil
The G1 Internet news portal posted a video showing one man with a gun in a holster, though he did not draw the weapon. Police quickly dispersed the crowd and no one was arrested or hurt.
In the World Cup host city of Fortaleza, meanwhile, a small group of protesters were met by a heavily armed contingent of police officers.
WATCH: Armed police stopped a group of protesters from marching on Fortaleza’s football stadium
Holding banners criticising the country’s government and world footballing body, FIFA, a group of about 60 masked demonstrators goaded the police and threatened them with stones and Molotov cocktails.
Some local fans denounced the demonstrators for creating unrest during the biggest game ever played in the northeastern Brazilian city.
“Why don’t they go make their views known in the ballot boxes,” “Like that, they can have an impact. Not while we have this game for the Brazilian team here in Fortaleza, a game that is really important [to the city’s population]. They come here and cause this,” a local woman said. (see video)
Back in downtown Sao Paulo, police used pepper spray on fans trying to force their way into a fan fest locale to watch the Brazil-Mexico game. Police said the area had been sealed off because it had already reached its capacity of 25,000 spectators.
Some fans hurled bottles and metal crowd-control barriers at police, injuring 15 people, none seriously.
— With files from Associated Press
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