There were fewer murders in Brazil’s second city of Rio de Janeiro last year – but the number of killings by police has soared.
Killings by police are at their highest levels since the 1990s, with an average of five people a day killed by officers.
Rights organisations say many officers have killed people in self-defence but some are engaging in summary executions.
Innocent civilians are often getting caught in the crossfire, as Al Jazeera’s John Holman reports.
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In This Story: Brazil
Its capital is Brasília, and its most populous city is São Paulo. The federation is composed of the union of the 26 states and the Federal District. It is the largest country to have Portuguese as an official language and the only one in the Americas, as well as the most populous Roman Catholic-majority country.
Its Amazon basin includes a vast tropical forest, home to diverse wildlife, a variety of ecological systems, and extensive natural resources spanning numerous protected habitats. Brazil is classified as an upper-middle income economy by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country.