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Brazil: Thousands protest anew, but crowds smaller

  • People march toward the Mineirao stadium during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    People march toward the Mineirao stadium during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • Residents of the upper middle class neighborhood Barra da Tijuca shout slogans as they hold a banner that reads in Portuguese; "The people woke up," during an anti-goverment protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    Residents of the upper middle class neighborhood Barra da Tijuca shout slogans as they hold a banner that reads in Portuguese; "The people woke up," during an anti-goverment protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • A man wearing a mask depicting Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, holds a banner criticizing her yesterday speech during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    A man wearing a mask depicting Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, holds a banner criticizing her yesterday speech during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • Riot police get a respite from manning anti-government protests as they rest inside a police vehicle near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    Riot police get a respite from manning anti-government protests as they rest inside a police vehicle near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • A riot police officer uses his front teeth to hold onto to a non-lethal grenade during an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    A riot police officer uses his front teeth to hold onto to a non-lethal grenade during an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • A message by Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff is broadcast live at the bus station in Brasilia, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The Brazilian ended her near-silence about more than a week of massive, violent protests, saying in a prime time TV broadcast Friday that peaceful demonstrations were part of a strong democracy but that violence could not be tolerated. She promised to make improvements to public services, but said it couldn't be done overnight. (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

    A message by Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff is broadcast live at the bus station in Brasilia, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The Brazilian ended her near-silence about more than a week of massive, violent protests, saying in a prime time TV broadcast Friday that peaceful demonstrations were part of a strong democracy but that violence could not be tolerated. She promised to make improvements to public services, but said it couldn't be done overnight. (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

  • People shout slogans during an anti-government protest at Ipanema beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday, with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    People shout slogans during an anti-government protest at Ipanema beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday, with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • People march during an anti-government protest at Ipanema beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    People march during an anti-government protest at Ipanema beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • A man holds a Brazilian flag while he walks amid soccer balls painted with a red cross during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup at the Copacabana beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    A man holds a Brazilian flag while he walks amid soccer balls painted with a red cross during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup at the Copacabana beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • Residents of the Ipanema neighborhood shout during an anti-government protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    Residents of the Ipanema neighborhood shout during an anti-government protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • A cross and a Brazilian flag are placed next to soccer balls painted with red crosses during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World  Cup at the Copacabana beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    A cross and a Brazilian flag are placed next to soccer balls painted with red crosses during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup at the Copacabana beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • A man shouts slogans during an anti-government protest in the Ipanema neighborhood, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    A man shouts slogans during an anti-government protest in the Ipanema neighborhood, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • A resident of Ipanema neighborhood shouts during an anti-government protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    A resident of Ipanema neighborhood shouts during an anti-government protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • Soccer balls painted with red crosses and placed in the sand of Copacabana Beach are seen during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013.  Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

    Soccer balls painted with red crosses and placed in the sand of Copacabana Beach are seen during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • A man holds a sign that reads in Portuguese; "Corruption: Heinous crime," in front of an advancing group of military police dressed in riot gear, at an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    A man holds a sign that reads in Portuguese; "Corruption: Heinous crime," in front of an advancing group of military police dressed in riot gear, at an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • A special operations police officer works to put out a burning barricade during an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    A special operations police officer works to put out a burning barricade during an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • People march toward the Mineirao stadium, before the start of the Confederations Cup soccer match between Japan and Mexico, during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    People march toward the Mineirao stadium, before the start of the Confederations Cup soccer match between Japan and Mexico, during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • A man wearing a mask depicting Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, holds a banner criticizing her yesterday speech during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    A man wearing a mask depicting Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, holds a banner criticizing her yesterday speech during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • People march toward the Mineirao stadium during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • Residents of the upper middle class neighborhood Barra da Tijuca shout slogans as they hold a banner that reads in Portuguese; "The people woke up," during an anti-goverment protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • A man wearing a mask depicting Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, holds a banner criticizing her yesterday speech during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • Riot police get a respite from manning anti-government protests as they rest inside a police vehicle near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • A riot police officer uses his front teeth to hold onto to a non-lethal grenade during an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • A message by Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff is broadcast live at the bus station in Brasilia, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The Brazilian ended her near-silence about more than a week of massive, violent protests, saying in a prime time TV broadcast Friday that peaceful demonstrations were part of a strong democracy but that violence could not be tolerated. She promised to make improvements to public services, but said it couldn't be done overnight. (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)
  • People shout slogans during an anti-government protest at Ipanema beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday, with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • People march during an anti-government protest at Ipanema beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • A man holds a Brazilian flag while he walks amid soccer balls painted with a red cross during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup at the Copacabana beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • Residents of the Ipanema neighborhood shout during an anti-government protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • A cross and a Brazilian flag are placed next to soccer balls painted with red crosses during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World  Cup at the Copacabana beach, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • A man shouts slogans during an anti-government protest in the Ipanema neighborhood, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • A resident of Ipanema neighborhood shouts during an anti-government protest in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. The country's president, who is a former leftist guerrilla, has done little more than show brief support for the protesters since the demonstrations began a week ago. That's brought criticism that she has allowed the situation to spiral out of control. Rousseff was to meet Friday with bishops from the Catholic Church about the possible impact of the protests on a papal visit that is still scheduled next month. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • Soccer balls painted with red crosses and placed in the sand of Copacabana Beach are seen during a protest against spending on stadiums for the Confederation Cup and the 2014 World Cup in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013.  Demonstrators once again took to the streets in Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
  • A man holds a sign that reads in Portuguese; "Corruption: Heinous crime," in front of an advancing group of military police dressed in riot gear, at an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. City centers around Brazil were still smoldering on Friday after 1 million protesters took to the streets amid growing calls on social media for a general strike next week. While most protesters were peaceful, some small groups clashed violently with police, who responded in some cases with tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • A special operations police officer works to put out a burning barricade during an anti-government protest near the Cidade de Deus, or City of God slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, June 21, 2013. Demonstrations began as an outcry against a 10-cent hike in bus and subway fares in Brazil's largest cities, but have continued even after announcements that the increases would be rescinded. Protesters have expressed frustration with corruption and what they say are high taxes and poor public services. They've demanded everything from education reforms to free bus fares while denouncing the billions of public dollars spent on stadiums before the World Cup and the Olympics. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • People march toward the Mineirao stadium, before the start of the Confederations Cup soccer match between Japan and Mexico, during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
  • A man wearing a mask depicting Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, holds a banner criticizing her yesterday speech during a protest in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Saturday, June 22, 2013. Demonstrators once again took to the streets of Brazil on Saturday, continuing a wave of protests that have shaken the nation and pushed the government to promise a crackdown on corruption and greater spending on social services. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Thousands of anti-government demonstrators again took to streets in several Brazilian cities yesterday after the president broke a long silence to promise reforms, but the early protests were smaller than those of recent days and with only scattered reports of violence.

The police estimated about 60,000 demonstrators gathered in a central square in the city of Belo Horizonte, largely to denounce legislation that would limit the power of federal prosecutors to investigate crimes in a country where many are fed up with the high rate of robberies and killings. Many fear the law also would hinder attempts to jail corrupt politicians and other powerful figures.

President Dilma Rousseff, a former leftist guerrilla who was tortured under Brazil’s long military dictatorship, made a televised 10-minute appearance Friday backing the right to peaceful protest but sharply condemning violence, vandalism and looting.

She also promised to be tougher on corruption and said she would meet with peaceful protesters, governors and the mayors of big cities to create a national plan to improve urban transportation and use oil royalties for investments in education. Much of the anger behind the protests has been aimed at costly bus fares, high taxes and poor public services such as schools and health care.

Many Brazilians, shocked by a week of protests and violence, hoped that Rousseff’s words would help soothe tensions and help avoid more violence, but not all were convinced by her promises of action.

Still, a rapidly growing crowd blocked Sao Paulo’s main business street, the Avenida Paulista, to press their demands.

Victoria Villela, a 21-year-old university student who joined a rapidly growing crowd of demonstrators there, said she was “frustrated and exhausted by the endless corruption of our government.

“It was good Dilma spoke, but this movement has moved too far, there was not much she could really say. All my friends were talking on Facebook about how she said nothing that satisfied them. I think the protests are going to continue for a long time and the crowds will still be huge.”

Around her, fathers held young boys aloft on their shoulders and older women gathered in clusters with their faces bearing yellow and green stripes, the colors of the Brazilian flag.

In the northeastern city of Salvador, where Brazil’s national football team was set to play Italy in a match for the Confederations Cup, some 5,000 protesters gathered about 3 miles from the stadium, shouting demands for better schools and transportation and denouncing heavy spending on next year’s World Cup.

Rodrigo Costa, a 32-year-old civil engineer in the city, said that it was good just to see a popular movement force “a head of state to go on TV and talk about the problems of the country.”

“She didn’t touch on all the issues that the people want to see improved,” Costa said. “But I think that just in general it was a good message.”

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