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Officials stand near the body of a man shot and killed this morning after the Olympics opening ceremony. Mark Humphrey/PA
muggers

Two people have been shot dead at Olympics sites in Rio de Janeiro

Ìn a separate incident, the Brazilian bomb squad have detonated a suspect package near the finishing line of the Olympic men’s cycling road race.

Updated 6.26pm

POLICE SHOT A mugger near the stadium where the Rio Olympics opening ceremony took place and a woman was killed close to another Olympic site, police said Saturday.

The violence has highlighted the task facing an unprecedented force of 85,000 soldiers and police deployed to secure the Olympics.

Rio police said in a statement that a man was mugging people near the Maracana stadium when he was intercepted by one of the police officers sent from another area of Brazil to Rio as part of the huge reinforcements.

The statement said:

The man was carrying out assaults when a military police officer… shot him.

Hours earlier, a female architect was killed while driving by one of the main entrances to the Olympic Boulevard, a redeveloped port area that now hosts the Olympic flame and has become a major tourist attraction.

Rio Olympics Opening Ceremony Police stand near the body of a man who was shot and killed. David J. Phillip David J. Phillip

The woman, 51, was attacked by three armed muggers, police said. She tried to flee and was shot in the head.

The shootings come as the Brazilian bomb squad carried out a controlled explosion on a suspect package near the finish line of the Olympic men’s cycling road race.

A loud bang was heard on the BBC’s coverage of the road race, with the commentators falling silent for a number of seconds before confirming that the noise had come from near the finish line.

A number of journalists in Rio took to Twitter to confirm that the bang was caused by a controlled explosion carried out by the anti-bomb team, with the riders over 70km away.

Bomb squad agents in protective clothing were operating near the press tribune at the site but the cause of the blast was not immediately clear.

There were no signs of panic or injuries and the race continued

The main focus of security at the Games is in Rio, a city where drug traffickers control large parts of poor neighborhoods.

However, the deployment of troops and police – double that used at the 2012 London Games – also includes the cities of Brasilia, Belo Horizonte, Manaus, Salvador and Sao Paulo, where football matches are being played.

Rio Olympics Opening Ceremony Fireworks over the Maracana during the opening ceremony this morning. David J. Phillip David J. Phillip

Meanwhile, Moroccan Olympic boxer Hassan Saada, who has been arrested in Rio for allegedly sexually assaulting two female cleaners, “does not understand the allegations”, the Moroccan Boxing Federation has said.

Officers arrested Saada, 22, from Casablanca, on suspicion of committing the assault on Wednesday, said a police statement released hours before Friday’s opening ceremony.

The statement said:

According to investigations, on 3 August the athlete sexually assaulted two Brazilian room cleaners who were working in the athletes’ village.

Police sources told Brazilian news site G1 that Saada was accused of calling the cleaners to his room on the pretext of asking them a question and then improperly touched them.

The women managed to escape. The site said that two other athletes were allegedly in the room at the time but did not react to the assault.

The Moroccan Boxing Federation said today the women had been in Saada’s room, but that no complaints were heard by the two other boxers in the suite at the time.

“The doors were open, and no noise and no complaints were heard,” it said.

- © AFP, 2016 With reporting from Darragh Peter Murphy.

Read: In photos: The opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro

Read: Belgian police officers attacked by machete-wielding man shouting “Allahu Akbar”

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