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  • President Jair Bolsonaro has also promised to purge the country from left-wing “crooks.

    President Jair Bolsonaro has also promised to purge the country from left-wing “crooks. | Photo: EFE

Published 4 November 2018
Opinion

Brazilian officials are debating building a 'very high wall' to deter arms trafficking along the Paraguayan border.

Among the “harsh and drastic” changes to Brazil’s politics and society, the deputy of President Jair Bolsonaro’s Social Liberal Party, Marcio Tadeu de Lemos, is debating building a wall bordering Paraguay, the Guardian reported Sunday.

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“Brazil is living through a catastrophe: a political catastrophe, an administrative catastrophe, a financial catastrophe, and a security catastrophe. It’s an utterly disagreeable state of affairs,” the Sao Paulo colonel said.

Reducing the rampant crime rate in the South American country was one of Bolsonaro’s top priorities, De Lemos said. Last year in Brazil, 63,880 homicides were recorded and, according to the former paratrooper, constructing ‘a very high wall’ would help deter arms dealers and smugglers sneaking across the country’s southwestern border.

Like Bolsonaro, De Lemos has defended the 1964- 85 dictatorship, ‘hard-line’ proposals, such as looser gun laws and military intervention, and has on many occasions compared himself to U.S. President Donald Trump.

Bolsonaro has endorsed the use of torture, vowed to expand the use of Brazil’s military police to ensure internal security despite the fact it has resulted in more deaths for Brazilians who live Rio’s favelas. The far-right politician has also promised to purge the country from left-wing “crooks.

“These red outlaws will be banished from our homeland. It will be a clean-up, the likes of which has never been seen in Brazilian history,” he warned back in October. In his first interview after winning the presidential election, Bolsonaro also referred to Brazil’s Landless Workers' Movement (MST) as terrorists and said there will be no dialogue with them.

Monica de Bolle, an expert from Johns Hopkins University Brazil, cautioned a “massive regression” and said, “This Brazil that is taking shape is not a country that I recognise. I don’t recognise this country and I don’t know what it is going to become.”

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