A narrator of United Nations warned this Friday that political violence is “destroying democracy” in Brazil and urged the authorities to take measures to guarantee a safe environment during the October elections.
The rapporteur special of the UN on the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association, Clément Nyaletsossi Voule, shared his concern at a press conference in São Paulo, at the end of a 12-day official visit.
Look: The only survivor of the Holocaust born in Brazil dies at 94
“The violence politics it is destroying Brazilian democracy, prevents participation and generates insecurity and lack of peace in the communities,” said Voule, a Togolese jurist appointed rapporteur in 2018.
Brazil will elect a new president in October, in an election that polls indicate will be resolved between the president, the far-right Jair Bolsonarowho will seek a new term, and his arch-rival, the leftist former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
“The biggest concern is that there violence during the (electoral) process and that some argue that those results may not be legitimate”assured.
without citing Bolsonarowho has questioned the reliability of the current electronic ballot box system without presenting evidence, assured that this “discussion must be based on facts” and warned that “an environment of insecurity is being created.”
Voule said that the State must guarantee that the elections are free of “discrimination, disinformation, fake news and hate speech”.
During his mission, Voule met with activists and visited favelas and quilombola communities in Salvador (Bahia), Brasilia, Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, and on Monday he will present a preliminary report with his conclusions.
The specialist expressed his concern about what he described as a “quite polarized environment”, marked by an “extreme violence” against human rights defenders, indigenous people and quilombolas. He also cited abuses by police forces in some communities in the country.
Finally, he mentioned the crime of the councilor for Rio de Janeiro Marielle Franco, a black militant shot to death in 2018, as a case that “needs to be resolved” as “the only way to guarantee that a black candidate can safely participate in the elections”.