November 11th, 2019.
After last week’s controversial Supreme Court decision, which reversed a previous ruling that ordered the immediate arrest of convicted felons after losing their second appeal, former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has been released from his cell at the Federal Police headquarters in Curitiba. Bolivian president Evo Morales resigned, after widespread controversy over the recent presidential elections in which he declared himself winner. The Brazilian Navy sent 700 men to help in the cleaning process of beaches in the Northeastern region, after last month’s disastrous oil spill. In a day of fury in Hong Kong, a protester was critically injured when police fired at close range at a crowd, and one man who opposed the protests was set on fire by demonstrators. Finally, Foreign Relations ministers of the European Union have decided to extend for another year sanctions against dictator Nicolás Maduro’s government.
Take a look at our highlights.
Ex-president Lula released from jail after STF decision
After one year and seven months in jail, former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva was released on Friday from the special cell he had been living in at the Federal Police headquarters in Curitiba. The Workers’ Party politician was one of the defendants who benefitted from a decision made by the Federal Supreme Court which overturned by 6 votes to 5 a previous ruling that allowed the immediate arrest of convicts after losing their second appeal. Lula has already lost three appeals in the conviction involving his Guarujá triplex apartment, but still has pending appeals in the Supreme Court. Lula went straight to São Bernardo do Campo, where he rallied with his supporters in front of the local Metal Workers’ Union.
Bolivia’s president Evo Morales resigns after election fraud accusations
Evo Morales has resigned from the presidency of Bolivia. The announcement was made on national TV on Sunday. Morales had been in power for almost 14 years, and his vice-president, Álvaro García, also announced his resignation. The commander of the Bolivian Armed Forces, Williams Kaliman, had previously asked Morales to step down. The Organization of American States claimed to have seen several irregularities during the October presidential elections, in which Morales sought his fourth term – after having obtained the possibility of a new reelection through a parliamentary maneuver. The country is currently in a state of turmoil, with widespread looting and rival factions clashing in the streets.
Navy sends 700 men to help clean beaches in Northeastern Brazil
Two ships with 700 Navy marines and divers arrived at the Suape Harbor, in Pernambuco, on Sunday. They will join the efforts being carried out in beaches affected by the oil spill on Brazil’s Northeastern shore. According to statements made by the Monitoring and Assessment Group, the members of the military have been trained by teams from Petrobras, under the surveillance of IBAMA, and will act in the clean-up operation of mangroves, estuaries, and reefs.
Day of Fury in Hong Kong: police shoot protesters at close range
Hong Kong has undergone one of its most violent days since the beginning of the pro-democracy protests in June. Today, one person was shot by a police officer who fired live rounds at a group of protesters; the victim is currently hospitalized in critical condition. The shooting sparked fiercer protests, and roads were blocked in the city’s main commercial districts. The police fired tear gas, and people were forced into shopping malls. One police officer on a motorbike tried repeatedly to run over protesters in the streets. Meanwhile, a video surfaced of protesters setting a man on fire who “openly disagreed with radical protesters,” according to Hu Xujin, editor of China’s state-owned newspaper Global Times.
EU extends Venezuela sanctions for a year
Foreign Relations ministers from European Union countries decided at a meeting held today to extend for a year an arms embargo on Venezuela and the banning of sales of equipment which could be used against demonstrators. They also extended an asset freeze and travel bans against 25 Venezuelan officials. The EU says it’s targeting the Maduro regime over “persistent actions undermining democracy, the rule of law, and the respect for human rights,” adding that these sanctions are “flexible and reversible” and do not target ordinary Venezuelans.