BRASILIA, Jan 8 (Reuters) – Supporters of Brazil’s far-right former President Jair Bolsonaro stormed the country’s Congress, presidential palace and supreme court on Sunday, a move unlike two years ago. The invasion of the U.S. Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump is similar.
Leftist President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who defeated Bolsonaro in last year’s most tense election in a generation, has announced he will The federal security intervention in Riyadh will last until January 10. 31 After the security forces in the capital were initially overwhelmed by the invaders.
At a news conference, he blamed Bolsonaro and complained about the lack of security in the capital, saying authorities allowed “fascists” and “fanatics” to run rampant.
“These vandals, we can call them fanatical Nazis, fanatic Stalinists… fanatic fascists, did something that has never been done in the history of this country,” said Lula, who is on an official visit to the state of São Paulo. Say. “All these people who did this will be found out and they will be punished.”
Images of thousands of protesters clad in yellow and green rioting in the capital capped months of tension following Oct. 17. 30 votes. Trump aide Jair Bolsonaro, who has yet to throw in the towel, has sparked a violent campaign against the election by peddling false claims that Brazil’s electronic voting system is prone to fraud.
There was no immediate word from Bolsonaro, who has barely spoken in public since losing the election. He flew to Florida 48 hours before the end of his term and missed Lula’s inauguration.
“This genocidal … is encouraging this through social media in Miami,” Lula said, referring to Bolsonaro. “Everyone knows that the former president has spoken many times to encourage that.”
The violence in Brasília could heighten the legal risks facing Bolsonaro. It’s also causing headaches for U.S. authorities as they debate what to do with his stay in Florida.
Bolsonaro’s family attorney, Frederick Wassef, did not respond to a request for comment.
Security forces managed to retake the three buildings around 6:30 p.m. local time, about three hours after the intrusion was initially reported, according to Global News. Television footage showed dozens of rioters being led away in handcuffs.
The invasion was condemned by world leaders.
U.S. President Joe Biden said the situation was “outrageous” and that similar incidents had occurred during his own presidency. His secretary of state, Anthony Blinken, said Washington would fully support Lula and Brazil’s institutions.
“Using violence to attack a democracy is always unacceptable,” Blinken tweeted. “We join Lula in urging an immediate end to these operations.”
The invasion posed immediate problems for Lula, who only took office on January 1. 1 and pledged to unite a country torn apart by Bolsonaro’s nationalist populism. Television footage showed protesters storming the Supreme Court and Congress, chanting slogans and smashing furniture. Local media estimated around 3,000 people attended.
Social media images of protesters smashing security cameras and smashing windows of modernist buildings showed that reformist Supreme Court Justice Alexander de Morais has been a supporter of Bolsonaro and his supporters. thorn in the side.
Video widely circulated on social media showed a police officer being knocked off his horse by demonstrators armed with sticks.
Brasília Governor Ibaneis Rocha wrote on Twitter that he had fired his top security official, Anderson Torres, who had been Bolsonaro’s justice minister. The attorney general’s office said it had filed a request for Torres’ arrest.
Torres told the UOL website that he was on vacation with his family in the United States and did not meet with Bolsonaro. UOL said he was in Orlando, where Bolsonaro is currently based.
On Saturday, with rumors of a confrontation brewing in Brasília, Justice Minister Flavio Dino authorized the deployment of national public security forces. “This ridiculous attempt to impose will by force will not succeed,” he tweeted Sunday.
In Washington in 2021, Trump supporters attacked police, broke through barricades and stormed the Capitol, but failed to prevent Congress from confirming Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election.
Trump, who has announced a third run for president in 2024, has pressured Vice President Mike Pence not to certify the vote, and he continues to falsely claim that the 2020 election was taken from him through widespread fraud snatched away.
In Brasilia, there have been at least three reports of protesters attacking journalists, according to the Brasilia journalists union, citing unconfirmed reports.
Reporting by Adriano Machado, Anthony Boadle, Lisandra Paraguassu, Ricardo Brito, Peter Frontini, Gabriel Araujo; Writing by Gabriel Stargardter; Editing by Brad Haynes and Daniel Wallis
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