At least six bodies were reportedly discovered at the base of Brazil‘s famed Sugarloaf mountain on Sunday, according to local rescue authorities.
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Police claim the bodies were retrieved from the area following a fierce gun battle between law enforcers and gunmen days before. The exchange resulted in widespread panic among residents as well as the suspension of the Sugarloaf cable car service which left tourists stranded.
The 100 or so visitors to the upscale Urca region were rendered immobile for about two hours while the gunfire exchange took place. Several weapons seized police following a land and sea search, police said.
The lawmen claimed that the deceased individuals were involved in ongoing gang battle over turf. President Michel Temer deployed armed forces across the state of Rio de Janeiro earlier in the year.
Brazil is facing economic and political unrest as well as experiencing a notable spike in violence, over the past few years.