Brazilian president-elect Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva accused far-right incumbent Jair Bolsonaro Tuesday of inciting violence, a day after pro-Bolsonaro protesters torched vehicles, clashed with police and tried to invade their headquarters.
Monday’s violence rocked the capital, Brasilia, hours after Brazil’s top electoral court officially certified Lula as the winner of the country’s October elections, putting the final seal on the veteran leftist’s victory over far-right President Bolsonaro.
The outgoing president “still hasn’t recognized his defeat, and continues inciting these fascist activists protesting in the street,” Lula, who is due to be inaugurated on January 1, told a news conference.
“He’s following the same script as all the world’s fascists,” added the 77-year-old ex-president, who previously led Brazil from 2003 to 2010.
The protests erupted Monday night after the Supreme Court ordered the arrest of a pro-Bolsonaro Indigenous leader, Jose Acacio Serere Xavante, on charges of threatening the democratic rule of law.
Bolsonaro supporters set cars and buses on fire in central Brasilia and tried to invade the headquarters of the federal police, who fought them back with tear gas and rubber bullets.
Serere Xavante was accused of organizing “anti-democratic” protests around the capital, including outside the hotel where Lula is staying.
Bolsonaro supporters have been protesting ever since his loss in the October 30 runoff election, blocking roads and calling for a military intervention to keep him in power.
They allege a conspiracy to force Bolsonaro from power.
Bolsonaro asked the protesters to stop blocking roads two days after his defeat, but encouraged what he called “legitimate” protests.
Since then, he has virtually disappeared from public view, with few events on his official agenda.
Lula compared the outgoing president to fellow far-right leaders in Italy, France, Hungary and the United States.
Lula also continued adding names to his incoming cabinet.
Singer Margareth Menezes said she had accepted his offer to be culture minister, making her the first woman and first black person appointed to the new administration.
Aloizio Mercadante, a senior figure in Lula’s Workers’ Party (PT), was meanwhile named head of the Brazilian development bank, BNDES.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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