Bolsonaro Supporters Attack Police HQ

Brazilian president, who claims election fraud, said his fate was in their hands
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 13, 2022 10:50 AM CST
Bolsonaro Supporters Attack Police HQ
A bus, reportedly set alight by supporters of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, burns in Brasilia, Brazil, on Monday.   (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

Supporters of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro clashed with police Monday, setting fire to several vehicles and allegedly attempting to invade the federal police's headquarters in the capital city of Brasilia, per the AP. Images of chaos circulated on local television channels and social media as a small number of protesters, many wearing the yellow and green of Brazil's flag that has come to symbolize "Bolsonarismo," roamed the city. Brasilia's public security secretariat said clashes broke out after police carried out an arrest warrant. Earlier that day, Supreme Court Justice Alexandre de Moraes had ordered the temporary arrest of Jose Acacio Serere Xavante, suspected of participating in antidemocratic protests.

Since Bolsonaro lost reelection to Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Oct. 30, many of his supporters have gathered outside military barracks across the country refusing to concede defeat and asking for the armed forces to intervene. Earlier Monday, the nation's electoral authority awarded da Silva and his vice president an official certification, sealing their victory. Bolsonaro, who hasn't conceded defeat and has repeatedly claimed that the nation's electronic voting system is prone to fraud, told supporters Friday that his political future was in their hands.

"The depredation and attempted invasion of the Federal Police building in Brasilia is unacceptable," said Flavio Dino, future justice and public security minister in the upcoming administration. The leader of the opposition in the Senate, Randolfe Rodrigues, said some protestors, whom he called "terrorists," had concentrated around the hotel where da Silva is staying. Police in full gear were rushed to the Federal Police's headquarters as backup, as officers had to use stun grenades and rubber bullets, local media reported. Police also blocked several avenues and streets across Brasilia. Protesters elsewhere set at least one bus on fire and were seen gathering metal barriers. (More Brazil stories.)

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