Bolsonaro to followers Free the streets

Bolsonaro to followers: “Free the streets”

The president-elect of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro urged his supporters to dismantle roadblocks set up to protest his defeat in the presidential election. “I appeal to you: free the streets,” he said in a video distributed on Wednesday (local time) on the online network Twitter. Bolsonaro added that other protests “in other places” are “welcome” because “they are part of the democratic game”.

“Protesting in a different way, in different places, that’s very good,” he said. “I’m on your side and I’m sure you’re on mine,” he continued. But the roads must be cleared “for the good of our nation”. Street blocks seemed to him “not to be part of legitimate demonstrations,” Bolsonaro said.

Street blocks in protest

In protest against the victory of Bolsonaro’s opponent Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva Bolsonaro supporters have repeatedly blocked roads in various parts of the country for days. In Santa Catarina, protesters were filmed this Wednesday giving the Nazi salute. Almost 70% of voters voted for Bolsonaro.

In addition, tens of thousands of Bolsonaro supporters called for the army to intervene on Wednesday. As Brazilian news website UOL reported, demonstrations in front of military sites for army intervention took place in eleven of the 27 states on Wednesday – including in front of the army’s headquarters in the capital Brasília.

Leftist Lula won the presidential election on Sunday against Bolsonaro. Lula won 50.9% of the votes in the second round, Bolsonaro 49.1%. It is the closest presidential election result in Brazil’s recent history. Only after about two days of silence did Bolsonaro declare on Tuesday that he “respected” the Constitution and thus gave the green light for the transfer of power to Lula – without admitting his defeat.