Brazil, 10th January, 2023 – The action of Bolsonaro protesters that culminated in the dispossession of the Brazilian public and historical patrimony in the federal capital, in a vile attempt of an anti-democratic coup, is marked as a tragedy. The International Institute on Race, Equality and Human Rights (Race and Equality) calls on the Brazilian state to prioritize, in its public security plan, the investigation and containment of anti-democratic acts on the rise in the country. As such, we urge accountability and justice of all those involved in acts of vandalism at the headquarters of the three branches of power, as well as the identification of the financiers of this criminal articulation.
Since the establishment of the Democratic State of Law, for the first time, this insurgent act threatens Brazilian democracy at the national and international level. The events of January 8, 2023 are worrying not only because they undermine the popular sovereign will established in the 2022 electoral process, but also for seeking to legitimize hate crimes and escalating violence under the cover of freedom of expression. Thus, we align ourselves with the international repudiation and call for haste and rigid investigations with the observation of due process.
The omission of the military police and the convenience of the army resonate as a warning to those currently in the administrative office that the worst can happen. Therefore, Brazil needs to prioritize, at the national level, the agenda of democratic security to face such situations of sharp polarization especially with the victory of President Lula. The nearly 150 buses that arrived in Brasilia with Bolsonaro protesters were known to the state and the security forces. Thus, the deliberate omission of the invasion of public buildings besides representing an affront to Brazilian democracy, reveals the country’s impunity dressed as a political tonic of forgetfulness and privilege. The caricature of the ‘Capitol Bolsonarista’ is elitist, racist, sexist, and LGBTIphobic.
Thus, Race and Equality as a human rights organization, repudiates the attacks against the three branches of power, and hopes that President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva can reestablish the defense of peace and democracy. It is also essential to foster a policy of confrontation and monitoring of anti-democratic movements that, motivated by the Bolsonaro agenda, will not cease during the next four years of office. Therefore, it is urgent that any possibility of amnesty is out of the question for the Republic of Brazil to move towards equity and social justice.