Fanatical supporters of Brazil’s outgoing President Jair Bolsonaro set cars and buses ablaze and tried to storm the federal police headquarters in the country’s capital, in what one commentator called a botched attempt aimed at Initiating riots in the style of January 6.
The eruption erupted Monday night after the leftist politician who defeated Bolsonaro in October’s historic election – former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva – received formal approval from Brazil’s electoral court. violence.
Hours later, die-hard Bolsonariists hoping to overturn the result rampaged through central Brasilia after a member of their militant group was accused of trying to incite violence to prevent Lula from being sworn in on January 1 And was arrested.
Witnesses saw extremists, many wearing the Brazilian yellow shirts that symbolize the president’s far-right movement, confront security forces outside federal police headquarters, Reuters said. Police used stun grenades and tear gas to disperse the crowd.
Video posted on social media by bystanders and local journalists showed militant Bolsonaro supporters setting a bus on fire.
“The center of Brasilia … looks like a war zone,” tweets Alan Rios, a reporter for the local news website Metropoles, with pictures of the devastation. “Buses and cars burned, buildings and road signs destroyed, trash cans and gas canisters littered the floor after being used as weapons,” Rios wrote.
political commentator thomas traumann tweets “Bolsonarismo has gone from a popular far-right movement to a terrorist organization,” said his denunciation.
“This is an attempt [replicating] The Capitol,” Trauman added, referring to the onslaught of hardcore Donald Trump supporters on the U.S. legislature on Jan. 6, 2021. “It’s not going to work, but it’s an attempt.
The violence had reportedly subsided by Tuesday morning, raising fears of further unrest ahead of Lula’s inauguration. Hundreds of thousands of supporters are expected to attend the event, which will feature performances by some of Brazil’s biggest names, including Pabllo Vittar, Paulinho da Viola, Martinho da Vila and Maria Rita.
Flávio Dino, appointed by Lula as future justice minister, tried to reassure Brazilians on Monday night, telling reporters: “Unfortunately, does anyone want anti-democratic and illegal chaos? Yes. Yes, there are. But these guys didn’t win today, and they won’t win tomorrow.”