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Anti-impeachment protests highlight Temer’s failures in Brazil

Brazil

Thousands of protesters rallied Sunday against the interim president’s assault on diversity and what they described as an undemocratic impeachment process, Kimberley Brown reports.

On Sunday, massive anti-impeachment protests were organized in Sao Paulo, Brazil, by the MTST, Movimento dos Trabalhadores Sem Teto or Homeless Workers’ Movement. Various other social movements participated, including women’s rights organizations, unions, workers’ collectives and student movements.

The protests were aimed against the new interim President Michel Temer and his changes to government ministries making their composition all white, male and staffed with representatives from unelected parties. The changes do not represent the diverse people of Brazil, said protesters at the event.

Many were opposed to the impeachment of Dilma Rousseff because of their anger with Temer. Some made clear that they were against Temer because they were pro-democracy and he was not elected. However this did not easily translate into tacit support for the previous outgoing administration.

‘We don’t necessarily support Dilma’s government, but we do support democracy. Because we elected a government and all we got was this confusion,’ said Samara Gardenia from Intersindical.

A local journalist (working with Brasil da Fato) speculated that there were some 30,000 people participating in Sunday’s event. The journalist has been following the anti-impeachment protests around the city and this was one of the smaller ones he’s seen. One reason for this difference in size is that the event was organized mainly by one group, the MTST, rather than several, he said.

The march started at roughly 3pm local time, with about 45 minutes of speeches, rallying and a long march to Temer’s house. The plan for some was to storm his home, but protesters were stopped by officials.

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SOUNDBITE 1: (Portuguese) ‘We don’t necessarily support Dilma’s government, but we do support democracy. Because we elected a government and all we got was this confusion.’ – Samara Gardenia from Intersindical

SOUNDBITE 2: (Portuguese) ‘Good afternoon, I’m Luis from Vila Nova Palestina. This is not the first time that we’re here fighting this long battle against regression. Temer’s state, which is doing many things here, this interim government that took power is taking positions that it shouldn’t and cutting things that the incumbent president implemented, which is Dilma.’ – Luis from the MTST

SOUNDBITE 3: (Spanish) ‘In talking about this interim government, we as women don’t believe, well, they don’t represent us.’ – Marli from the Marcha Mundial das Mujeres

SOUNDBITE 4: (Spanish) ‘This coup that is there, it’s better not to call it the government, has no legitimacy. It wasn’t elected, and nobody in the ministries represent the people. They didn’t get one vote from the people. So, they have a long term project, but we don’t want that project. We don’t want it. That’s why we’re fighting. That’s why we’re in the street.’ – Marli, soy de la Marcha Mundial de las Mulheres

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