Brazil’s Bolsonaro, Lula compete in the presidential campaign preview rally According to Reuters


© Reuters. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro meets with supporters during the “For Freedom and for Brazil” rally in Brasilia, Brazil May 1, 2022 .REUTERS / Adriano Machado


By Eduardo Simões and Lisandra Paraguassu

SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Brazil’s right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro and his main rival, former left-wing President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, staged competitive rallies on Sunday that are expected to return into a preview of their campaigns for the October presidential election.

Bolsonaro’s supporters have called out during the week of protests against the Supreme Court, after he pardoned a congressman sentenced to eight years in prison for threatening judges.

The pardoned congressman, Daniel Silveira, said during a rally in Niteroi, in the state of Rio de Janeiro, that his arrest last year was “unconstitutional.”

Silveira thanked members of parliament for helping him during his months in prison last year. He was freed in November, but the Supreme Court last month sentenced him to more than eight years in prison. Bolsonaro decided to pardon him.

Bolsonaro went to a protest against the Supreme Court in Brasilia on Sunday. In a video stream from one of his social media accounts, Bolsonaro said the protests were “peaceful, in defense of the constitution, democracy and freedom.”

In Sao Paulo, there were simultaneous protests in support of the president and Lula.

In a 15-minute speech, Lula promised supporters, including many union leaders, that he would “resume negotiations so that workers’ rights are respected again” if elected. Lula said he is speaking before becoming the official candidate, with the announcement scheduled for May 7.

The former president cited the United Nations human rights commission that recently found that Brazilian transplant investigators had violated due to

filed a lawsuit against Lula that resulted in him being jailed and barred him from running for office in 2018.

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