- Protesters set buses and cars on fire across Brasilia
- Lula is safe at hotel, incoming justice minister says
Daniel Carvalho and Simone Iglesias, Bloomberg News
EnergiesNet.com 12 14 2022
Supporters of President Jair Bolsonaro clashed with police in Brazil’s capital after an indigenous leader who sought to stop the certification of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was arrested by determination of a top court justice.
TV footage showed cars and buses on fire in Brasilia on Monday night, and police trying to disperse protesters in different parts of the city with tear gas. The president-elect is safe and security around his hotel has been reinforced, according to incoming Justice Minister Flavio Dino and police authorities.
The situation was calm by Tuesday morning after demonstrators were dispersed overnight. Traffic was slower than usual as police blocked several highways leading to the esplanade of ministries, congress and the Supreme Court.
Unrest started when the federal police carried out an order by Supreme Court Justice Alexandre de Moraes to detain Serere Xavante, an indigenous chief who the court identified as leading a series of demonstrations in which he allegedly called on Brazilians to take up arms to stop Lula’s certification.
Protesters tried to break into the federal police building where Xavante was being held, but failed to free him. Demonstrations then spilled over to other parts of the city, including near a mall where several cars were set on fire.
Xavante has alleged carried out “antidemocratic demonstrations in several parts of Brasilia” the court said in a statement posted on its website. “His temporary jailing is the only measure able to guarantee the investigation.”
Since Bolsonaro’s narrow defeat to Lula on Oct. 30, supporters of the conservative leader have been protesting the result of the election, sometimes blocking highways across the country while demanding military intervention to stop the president-elect from taking office. Last week, Bolsonaro broke a long silence to say the armed forces were the last standing barrier to socialism in Brazil.
Earlier on Monday, Lula’s election win was certified by the electoral court in a ceremony that closed the window for possible challenges to the voting.
Dino said he’s in touch with the governor of the federal district to ensure episodes of unrest don’t happen again, and promised that those responsible will be held accountable.
bloomberg.com 12 13 2022