“Not amnesty! Not amnesty! Not the amnesty!. The chant rang out Monday afternoon from the walls of the packed atrium of the University of São Paulo’s law school. Hours later, was the motto of the thousands of Brazilians that have taken to the streets of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, written on posters and flags. Night found them all in various cities.
the words are a request for punishment supporters of former President Jair Bolsonaro who stormed the Brazilian capital on Sunday and those who made the attack possible.
“These people must be punished, the people who ordered it must be punished, those who gave money for it must be punished,” said Bety Amin, a 61-year-old therapist, on São Paulo’s main avenue. The word “DEMOCRACY” was written on the back of her shirt. “They do not represent Brazil. We represent Brazil.”
Remember the liability claims an amnesty law who for decades protected soldiers accused of abuse and murder during the country’s dictatorship between 1964 and 1985. A 2014 truth commission report opened the debate on how Brazil handled the regime’s legacy.
Avoiding sanctions “can avoid tensions right now, but perpetuates instability”, said Luis Felipe Miguel, professor of political science at the University of Brasilia, in a column entitled “Amnesty no” and published on Monday afternoon. “This is the lesson we should have learned from the end of the military dictatorship, when Brazil chose not to punish the regime’s murderers and torturers.”
Brazilian police had already arrested around 1,500 rioters on Monday, some of them in the act of vandalizing Brazil’s Congress, Supreme Court and presidential palace, though most were arrested the next morning in a field in Brasilia.
Many have spent the day held in a gymnasiumand videos shared on pro-Bolsonaro social media channels showed some complaining about their poor treatment in a crowded space.
The federal police plan to press charges against at least 1,000 people and have started moving some of them to nearby Papuda prison, according to the police press office.
This was stated by the government of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva This is just the beginning.
Justice Minister Flávio Dino has promised to prosecute for crimes such as organized crime, coup attempt and violent abolition of the rule of law democratic for the people who worked behind the scenes to rally supporters on social media and fund their move.
He also said authorities would investigate allegations that local security personnel allowed the destruction to continue unhindered.
“We cannot and will not compromise in the performance of our legal duties,” Dino said. “It is essential that these acts do not happen again.”
Lula signed a decree on Sunday ordering the the federal government assumes control of security in the capitalhe. It was approved by the lower house of Congress on Monday and will now go to the Senate.
The unrest in Brasilia was a reminder of the threat to democracy posed by far-right elements who refuse to accept Bolsonaro’s electoral defeat.
Since their defeat on October 30, they have camped in front of the military barracks to ask for an intervention by the Army to allow Bolsonaro to remain in power and topple Lula. When the coup didn’t happen, they rebelled.
Dressed in the green and yellow colors of the national flag, they smashed windows, overturned furniture and threw computers and printers to the ground.
They drilled a huge painting by Emiliano Di Cavalcanti in the presidential palace and destroyed other works of art. They toppled the U-shaped table where federal Supreme Court justices meet, knocked down a door to a judge’s office, and vandalized a statue outside the courthouse. It was hours before the police expelled the crowd.
“What happened yesterday is unacceptable. It is terrorism,” Marcelo Menezes, a 59-year-old police officer from the northeastern state of Pernambuco, said during a protest in São Paulo. “I am here in defense of democracy. I’m here in defense of the people.”
the screams of “Not the amnesty!” they were also heard during Lula’s inaugural speech on January 1, when the president listed cases of negligence by the outgoing Bolsonaro government.
Bolsonaro, former army captain, fueled nostalgia for the era of dictatorship, hailed a well-known torturer as a hero and said the regime should go further executing the Communists. His government also commemorated the anniversary of the 1964 Brazilian coup.
Political analysts have reiterated that Bolsonaro it was laying the groundwork for an insurrection Image of what happened on January 6, 2021 at the United States Capitol. For months, he fueled the belief among his staunchest supporters that the country’s electronic voting system was vulnerable to fraud, even if never presented evidence and independent experts disagreed.
The election results, the narrowest since Brazil’s return to democracy, were quickly recognized by members of the entire political spectrum, including some Bolsonaro allies, and dozens of governments. And Bolsonaro surprised almost everyone disappear from public view.
He did not acknowledge defeat or denounce fraud, even though he and his party filed a request for millions of votes to be nullified, a request which was promptly denied.
None of this has dissuaded his staunchest supporters from the belief that Bolsonaro should remain in power.
In the aftermath of the riots, Lula said the so-called fanatic fascists and their backers must take responsibility. You also accused Bolsonaro of encouraging the insurrection.
Bolsonaro rejected the president’s accusation on Sunday night. In a tweet, he said that peaceful protest is part of democracy, but that vandalism and the invasion of public buildings are “the exceptions to the norm”.
The authorities were also investigating the role of the federal district police, either by not stopping the advance of protesters or by stepping aside to let them cause havoc. The capital’s prosecutor’s office said that at least the local security forces they had been negligent.
A federal Supreme Court judge has suspended the regional governor, in charge of the police force, from his post, accusing him of “willful omission”. Another judge accused authorities across the country of failing to prosecute “internal neo-fascism” quickly.
The episode eventually led to municipal and state governments as well untie the fields in favor of Bolsonaro in front of the military barracks, which had lasted since the elections. Their tents and tarps were removed and the campers were kicked out.
But on Monday pro-democracy protesters tried to get their message (“No to amnesty!”) across to investigating and prosecuting authorities, as well as far-right elements who might dare to challenge democracy again.
“After what happened yesterday (Sunday), we have to take to the streets,” said Marcos Gama, a pensioner who protested in São Paulo on Monday night. “We have to react.”
Mark Jones is a world traveler and journalist for News Rebeat. With a curious mind and a love of adventure, Mark brings a unique perspective to the latest global events and provides in-depth and thought-provoking coverage of the world at large.