Nightly News   |  June 18, 2013

More protests expected as Brazilians decry corruption

Tension building for weeks in Brazil finally erupted when an estimated 250,000 took to the streets in more than a dozen cities, complaining about rampant corruption, crime, low wages and a lack of social services. NBC’s Mark Potter reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> we have seen in the past couple months, a lot of pictures from foreign countries where people have flooded into the streets in protest, often fed by social media , often suppressed by the government. and now, tonight, it's brazil. big protests have developed out of nowhere, driven by economic injustice mostly. the biggest of them just last night, and again this evening. our report from nbc's mark potter .

>> reporter: an estimated quarter million brazilians took to the streets in more than a dozen cities, most were peaceful. there was violence. demonstrators in rio attacked the state legislature building throwing firebombs and confronting police. at least 20 officers and 10 protesters were reportedly injured. many in the crowds complained about rampant corruption, low wages and a lack of social services . we lack investments, he says. mainly in health and education. as brazil spends billions to build stadiums for next year's world cup and the 2016 olympics.

>> when you have a population of 13 million people who are going to bed hungry every night, it's hard to justify building so many stadiums with public funds.

>> reporter: tensions have been building for weeks, sparked by a government increase of bus fares and police cracking down on demonstrators. it comes at the same time as protests half a world away . with the help of social media . building on discontent. a statement posted on youtube, they have valid complaints and need to be heard. with brazil about to move on to the world stage with sporting events , not to mention, hosting the pope next month, many wonder if they will be ready. more protests are expected tonight.