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Left-wing Rio de Janeiro councillor Marielle Franco assassinated

LEFT-WING councillor Marielle Franco and her driver were assassinated in Rio de Janeiro late on Wednesday night.

Two police officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, told reporters that Ms Franco had been deliberately targeted by two men in a car, who fired nine shots into her vehicle.

She and her driver Anderson Pedro Gomes were killed and a press officer sitting in the back was injured.

Ms Franco, of the Socialism and Liberty Party, was a human rights activist and had been an outspoken critic of police violence.

Her last Twitter post had been: “Another homicide of a young man that could be credited to the police. Matheus Melo was leaving church when he was killed. How many others will have to die for this war to end?”

Unelected President Michel Temer sent in the army last month to take control of policing in Rio, citing an increase in violence, though opponents accused him of trying to distract from corruption scandals and a vastly unpopular set of pension cuts.

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