Latin American countries and China have poured criticism on the political turmoil in Brazil that saw President Dilma Rousseff suspended, with some countries denouncing the events as a “coup.”
Speaking in Caracas on Thursday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro termed Roussef’s suspension as a coup led by the United States and said Washington seeks to sabotage genuine democracy in the region.
“Venezuela repudiates and rejects the unfair dirty tricks that have been made against this great Brazilian woman, this great Latin American leader ,” Maduro said.
“I have no doubt that behind this coup d’etat is the bill, ‘Made in the USA.’ I have no doubt. This forms part of the legacy that President Barack Obama aims to leave in Latin America
, leaving aside the progressive, democratic and people’s movements,” he added.
This came after Brazil’s acting president Michel Temer took over from Rousseff, who was suspended for a six-month-long period on early Thursday by members of the Brazilian Senate for an impeachment trial.
The impeachment bid was launched over allegations that the president fiddled with government accounts in 2014 so she could increase public spending as a means of wooing votes for re-election.
Meanwhile, Cuba also questioned the legitimacy of the suspension and said it was a “judicial-parliamentary coup d’etat,” adding that the “majority of Brazilian senators decided to continue with the process of the political trial against the legitimately elected president of Brazil.”
In similar comments, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said that Rousseff’s suspension could negatively affect the stability across the entire region.
Brazilian acting President Michel Temer assumes as interim president at Jaburu Palace after the withdrawal of President Dilma Rousseff by the Senate in Brasilia on May 12, 2016. ©AFP
“Whatever happens in Brazil affects in an important way the rest of Latin America and I think we can in this be able to speak in the name of all the countries of Latin America before the need to maintain stability and, of course, the democratic institutionality of Brazil,” he said.
Elsewhere in the world reacting to the developments, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Friday that Beijing is paying close attention to the situation in Brazil.
The official also expressed hope that all sides in Brazil can appropriately handle the present situation and maintain the country’s political stability and socio-economic development.”
On Friday, supporters and opponents of Rousseff held protests outside Planalto Palace in the capital Brasilia.
The riot police used pepper spray and batons to disperse supporters of the suspended president after they tried to jump over the barricades outside the building.
This is while ro-Temer protesters were reportedly escorted away from the scene by security forces without the use of force.
The tensions come as Temer, the former vice president took over from Rousseff as acting president while she stands trial which could potentially end in her impeachment.
Brazil’s first female president will now be suspended for up to 180 days while a committee investigates whether she broke the country’s budget laws ahead of her re-election in 2014.
If Rousseff is convicted, Temer will serve as president until the end of 2018.
Rousseff has recently asserted that she has fallen victim to a plot by the extreme right, adding, “They want to come to power by an easy route and not through popular election for which we have fought.”
Temer has also said his priority is overcoming the crisis and taming the runaway recession.