Christian Poirier: Inauguration of right-wing zealot Jair Bolsonaro to Brazil’s presidency ushers in a dangerous era

Dec. 31, 2018 – Tomorrow Jair Bolsonaro will be inaugurated as president of Brazil. This extreme right-wing politician, and his scandal-ridden Cabinet, have close ties to Brazilian agribusiness and extractive industry, and Mr. Bolsonaro has pledged to “open the Amazon for business.”

Brazil’s National Indigenous Movement is mounting resistance to the Bolsonaro administration by working to defend socio-environmental protections at home and calling for solidarity from the international community, such as boycotts on commodities linked to violent conflicts and forest destruction.

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Amazon Watch Program Director Christian Poirier made the following statement in response to the inauguration:

The inauguration of right-wing zealot Jair Bolsonaro to Brazil’s presidency ushers in a dangerous era for human rights, environmental safeguards, and the rule of law in the world’s fourth-largest democracy.

President Bolsonaro intends to raze the Amazon and destroy indigenous rights in service of the Brazilian and international agribusiness and mining sectors, aided and abetted by foreign capital.

The coming months will prove pivotal in demonstrating the ability of Brazilian social movements and their allies around the world to forestall President Bolsonaro’s most destructive policy proposals. As such, Amazon Watch is redoubling its work in solidarity with our embattled partners to push back against an agenda that portends dire consequences for the world’s largest rainforest and its stewards, as well as for global climate stability.

Amazon Watch is a nonprofit organization founded in 1996 to protect the rainforest and advance the rights of indigenous peoples in the Amazon Basin. We partner with indigenous and environmental organizations in campaigns for human rights, corporate accountability and the preservation of the Amazon’s ecological systems. www.amazonwatch.org