Bolsonaro stumps for reelection in United Nations speech

The first world leader to address the podium at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, Bolsonaro spent much of his speech touting economic and political achievements, saying the country had reduced poverty, inflation and unemployment. happening

All of these indicators have actually shown small declines in the past two to three months, although the overall economic picture is a bit more stark, with one in 10 Brazilians currently unemployed and the inflation rate in August at 8.73 percent, up from last year. Compared to the same month.

The president, who has long described himself as business-friendly, also argued that privatization and deregulation under his administration had fostered a better economic environment in the country, and that this model of governance would continue. is emphasized — a very subtle appeal. For re-election.

The right-wing Bolsonaro faces the left-wing former president. Luiz Inacio Lola da Silva Elections in October, and directly criticizing them in his speech, told the assembled world leaders, “Just between 2003 and 2015, when Brazil was governed by the left, mismanagement, political fragmentation, and Petrobras “The debt deleveraging reached $170 billion,” he said, referring to the state petroleum company.

“The person responsible was unanimously convicted in three cases,” he continued, an undeniable reference to da Silva, whose conviction was overturned by Brazil’s Supreme Court in March 2021. – which cleared the way for a political challenge for the former leader. Bolsonaro this year.

The socially conservative themes of Bolsonaro’s campaign also came to the fore during his United Nations speech. “Other core values ​​for Brazilian society, reflected in the human rights agenda, are the defense of the family, the right to life by conception, self-defense and the rejection of gender ideology,” he said.

As in previous years, Brazil’s president pushed back against environmental concerns about the management of Brazil’s vast Amazon rainforest, telling the General Assembly that two-thirds of Brazil’s total area is still covered by native vegetation. “Which is exactly as it was. When Brazil was discovered, in the 1500s,” he said.

“In the Brazilian Amazon, an area the size of Western Europe, more than 80 percent of the forest is untouched, contrary to what is advertised by major national and international media,” Bolsonaro added.

Yet, under Bolsonaro’s presidency, deforestation in the Amazon has skyrocketed, and the president himself has clearly pushed for more development and economic activity that uses the country’s natural resources and vast protected forests. .

As CNN previously reported, between 2019 — when Bolsonaro took office — and 2021, according to the Brazilian Space Research Institute (INPE), a government agency, Brazil added 33,800 square kilometers ( lost more than 13,000 square miles) of rainforest. This is an area larger than Belgium, with an average loss of 11,000 square kilometers (4,250 sq mi) annually.

Experts say deforestation in Brazil is accelerating as Bolsonaro's first term ends

His rival da Silva — or Lula, as he is widely known — is seen as more likely to protect the environment, recently telling CNN Brazil that his government has “the Amazon’s There will be no deforestation.” According to INPE, during his presidency, which lasted from 2002 to 2010, deforestation in Brazil decreased by 65 percent.

Brazil’s domestic politics are nothing new to many in New York, with Bolsonaro’s supporters and critics airing their views in the streets around the United Nations headquarters.

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