Brazil soccer star: Anyone with plans to attend Olympics should stay at home

Special to WorldTribune.com

Fans who are set to attend the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro should re-think their plans, a top Brazilian soccer star said.

Soldiers guard an Olympic venue in Rio de Janeiro. /AP
Soldiers guard an Olympic venue in Rio de Janeiro. /AP

The situation in Brazil is too dangerous for tourists, according to soccer star Rivaldo, who posted a warning on his Instagram account, alluding to the case of a 17-year-old woman killed in a May 7 shootout.

“Things are getting uglier here every day,” Rivaldo wrote. “I advise everyone with plans to visit Brazil for the Olympics in Rio — to stay home. You’ll be putting your life at risk here. This is without even speaking about the state of public hospitals and all the Brazilian political mess. Only God can change the situation in our Brazil.”

The Rio Olympic Games open in just under three months.

The Olympic venues in Rio are largely ready, but visitors face not only the threat of violence but the feared Zika virus and water pollution. Lukewarm ticket sales are also worrying Olympics organizers.

Amnesty International reported that at least 11 people were killed in police shootings in Rio’s impoverished favelas last month. It said at least 307 people were killed by police last year, accounting for 20 percent of the homicides in the city.

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