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Friday, June 9, 2023

World Leaders Condemn Brazil Violence As US Lawmakers Call For Bolsonaro Extradition

World Leaders Condemn Brazil Violence As US Lawmakers Call For Bolsonaro Extradition – Joe Biden described the situation in Brazil as “outrageous” after supporters of former president Jair Bolsonaro stormed the country’s congress, presidential palace, and supreme court on Sunday, with several prominent US lawmakers demanding the extradition of the far-right figure from the United States. The condemnation expressed by President Biden was echoed by world leaders across the globe, including some of Brazil’s closest neighbors.

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President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who defeated Bolsonaro in a closely fought election last year, announced a federal security intervention in Brasília lasting until 31 January after capital security forces initially were overwhelmed by the invaders. “I condemn the assault on democracy and on the peaceful transfer of power in Brazil. Brazil’s democratic institutions have our full support and the will of the Brazilian people must not be undermined,” Biden said on Twitter.

US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, tweeted that “using violence to attack democratic institutions is always unacceptable,” and called for an immediate end to the invasion of Brazil’s democratic institutions. US national security adviser Jake Sullivan said the US condemns any effort to undermine democracy in Brazil. “President Biden is following the situation closely and our support for Brazil’s democratic institutions is unwavering. Brazil’s democracy will not be shaken by violence,” Sullivan said.

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On the eve of Lula’s inauguration, Bolsonaro left Brazil and is currently in Florida. Many in the United States and around the world saw echoes of the 2021 US Capitol invasion in the activities of Bolsonaro’s followers and urged for his extradition. Joaquin Castro, a member of the US House foreign affairs committee, told CNN that Bolsonaro had used “the Trump playbook to inspire domestic terrorists to try and take over the government.”

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“Right now Bolsonaro is in Florida, he should be extradited to Brazil. The United States should not be a refuge for this authoritarian who has inspired domestic terrorism in Brazil,” he said. US House Democrat and progressive figure, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, said: “Nearly two years to the day the US Capitol was attacked by fascists, we see fascist movements abroad attempt to do the same in Brazil.” She called for the US to “cease granting refuge to Bolsonaro in Florida.”

Chile’s president, Gabriel Boric, called the storming of Brazil’s institutions a “cowardly and vile attack on democracy.” Colombia’s president, Gustavo Petro, said, “fascism has decided to stage a coup. It is urgent for the OAS (Organization of American States) to meet if it wants to continue to live as an institution.” Argentinian president Alberto Fernandez tweeted that he committed his country’s “unconditional support for @LulaOficial in the face of this attempted coup he is facing.”

Venezuela president Nicola Maduro said he rejects “the violence generated by Bolsonaro’s neo-fascist groups which have assaulted Brazil’s democratic institutions. Our support for @LulaOficial and the Brazilian people who will surely mobilize in defense of peace and their president.” United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres called Brazil ‘a great democratic country’ and said he was confident the “will of the Brazilian people and the country’s institutions” would be respected.

Portugal’s foreign minister, João Gomes Cravinho, claimed much of the responsibility rested with Bolsonaro and said “it would be very important if he had a message of condemnation in the face of the disorder that is currently happening in Brasília.” Human Right Watch blamed the attack on a “years-long campaign by former president Jair Bolsonaro and his allies to undermine democratic principles and spread baseless claims of electoral fraud.”

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The organization released a statement calling the storming “an abhorrent attack on Brazil’s democratic institutions by people who are seeking to deny the right of Brazilians to vote for and elect the leaders of their choice, including by urging military intervention.” European Council president Charles Michel said that Lula had been “democratically elected by millions of Brazilians through fair and free elections,” and condemned “the assault on the democratic institutions of Brazil.”

France’s Emmanuel Macron said that Lula could count on his country’s  “unwavering support,” and that the “will of the Brazilian people and the democratic institutions must be respected!” The Australian government said it “condemns the attack on Brazil’s congress, supreme court and presidential palace,” which a department of foreign affairs and trade spokesperson said was “unacceptable; democratic institutions and processes must be respected.”

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