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News > Brazil

Facebook Removes Bolsonaro's Fake News Video About COVID-19

  • Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro, 2021.

    Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro, 2021. | Photo: Twitter/ @Reuters

Published 26 October 2021

Through this social network, the Brazilian President had previously questioned the effectiveness of the Pfizer and Sinovac vaccines. 

On Monday, the Facebook social network removed from its platform a live broadcast in which Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro claimed that British people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 are developing AIDS faster than expected.


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"Our policies do not allow posts that violated community guidelines for COVID-19," Facebook workers told the Associated Press. However, they did not answer why it took three days before this content was removed or whether language barriers had anything to do with such delay since Bolsonaro spoke in Portuguese. 

During a radio interview on Monday, Bolsonaro rejected criticism for allegedly spreading the AIDS claims and argued that he had found such information in an alleged article published in a Brazilian outlet in October 2020. 

It is the first time that Facebook has removed one of Bolsonaro’s weekly live broadcasts, which serve as a direct communication channel with his supporters and often accumulate thousands of views.

However, last year, this social network removed other posts by the right-wing president that violated community guidelines for COVID-19. Among them was a video in which Bolsonaro claimed that the hydroxychloroquine drug was curing the COVID-19 worldwide even though scientists had already proven the contrary.

Through Facebook and Instagram, Bolsonaro had also questioned the effectiveness of China’s Sinovac vaccine and suggested Brazilians not get the Pfizer vaccine since it allegedly caused the appearance of facial hair in women.

So far, Bolsonaro has 14.6 million followers on Facebook and nearly 19 million on Instagram. Along with the WhatsApp messaging service, these social media platforms were crucial to his electoral victory in 2019.

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