At least eleven people have been shot dead by seven armed men in Belem in northern Brazil on Sunday, according to reports by Brazilian newspaper Folha de S. Paulo.
The mass killing was perpetrated at around 16:00 local time in a local bar in the Guama neighborhood, which according to the police is a well-known site for drug selling and buying in the capital of the Para state in the northern part of the country.
A total of six men and five women were killed by reportedly seven hooded men that arrived at the bar in a vehicle and three motorcycles. A 12th victim was shot, yet survived and was rescued by the Emergency Care Unite.
At this moment reasons for the massacre have not yet been clarified but police suspect the shooting to be related to drug and criminal disputes in the city. Military Police secured the area.
As gun violence in Brazil continues to be a worrying issue, on May 7, Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro signed a decree to ease restrictions on gun imports and increase the amount of ammunition a person can buy.
Meanwhile, according to the Rio de Janeiro State Institute of Public Security (IPS), 434 military police killings took place in Rio de Janeiro in the first quarter of 2019, averaging seven deaths per day, becoming the most violent 90 days period in recorded history.