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Rousseff removal sparks anger in bitterly divided Brazil

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Rousseff removal sparks anger in bitterly divided Brazil

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Anger over the impeachment of Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has spilled onto the streets.

In Sao Paul on Wednesday night, shop fronts and bank windows were attacked in a protest that had started peacefully.

Violence flared after new leader Michel Temer addressed the nation on television.

Protesters also came out onto the streets elsewhere in the country.



Others though rallied to celebrate seeing the back of Dilma and 13 years of rule by her left-wing Workers Party. They have hailed her removal as paving the way for a change of fortunes for Brazil.

Ousted for breaking budgetary rules, Brazil’s first female leader is defiant – vowing to fight on, still insisting on her innocence and denouncing her impeachment as a ‘parliamentary coup’ backed by the economic elite.

“They think they’ve won,” she said outside the presidential residence, flanked by supporters.

“But they’re wrong. I know we will all fight. They will face the strongest and most energetic opposition that a ‘putschist’ government can face.”



The end of the Workers Party’s long grip on power sparked angry reactions from leftist governments across the region.

Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador withdrew their ambassadors, and Brazil responded by recalling its envoys for consultations. Cuba’s Communist government branded Rousseff’s ouster part of an “imperialist” offensive against progressive governments in Latin America.

As expected, the two thirds majority required to impeach Rousseff was reached in Brazil’s Senate on Wednesday.

Senators voted 61-20 to convict her for illegally using money from state banks to bankroll public spending.

In a surprise move, however, the chamber voted against barring Rousseff from holding public office for eight years.

Conservative Michel Temer, the former vice president, has been running the country since Rousseff was suspended in May. Now sure to keep the job as president, he has vowed a ‘new era’.

But he inherits a bitterly divided Brazil in no mood for the austerity he has pledged to implement to mend the battered economy of Latin America’s biggest nation.

In his first televised address to the nation after being sworn in as president through 2018, Temer urged Brazilians to unite behind him in working to rescue an economy suffering from over 11 percent unemployment.

“This moment is one of hope and recovery of confidence in Brazil. Uncertainty has ended,” Temer said in the speech broadcast after his departure for a G20 summit in China.

Until just a few years ago, Brazil was booming economically and its status was rising on the global stage.

The country then slid into its deepest recession in decades.

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