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  • Thousands of striking workers supporting the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa protest in Cape Town.

    Thousands of striking workers supporting the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa protest in Cape Town. | Photo: AFP

Published 17 December 2015

Cosatu issued a statement of solidarity with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

South Africa’s largest trade union (Cosatu), with close to 2 million members, criticized attempts on Wednesday by Brazilian opposition leaders to impeach President Dilma Rousseff.

“This parliamentary process amounts to a coup against the progressive government of President Rousseff, we support and commend the workers in Brazil for defending their party and their president from the reactionary forces,” Cosatu said in a press release.

ANALYSIS: Brazil: Understanding the Latest Efforts at Ousting Rousseff

The statement emphasized the need to strengthen international solidarity among social movements in an effort to defend the rights of workers and progressive governments around the world.

“These (imperialist) forces are hell-bent on reversing the advances that have been made by the people of South America. They are tirelessly working hard to divide the progressive forces in order to weaken them and then roll back their gains,” The Press Release added.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court will meet on Thursday afternoon to rule on objections to the impeachment lodged by Rousseff supporters, which led to the suspension of proceedings last week.

Government supporters allege the efforts to oust Rousseff via impeachment are a thinly-veiled attempt to overturn the results of the 2014 presidential election, where the incumbent president defeated her right-wing rival in the second round.

The elections revealed the continued support among the Brazilian social movements for the Brazilian Workers' Party. Throughout Rousseff’s presidential campaign she received public endorsements from various factions of the Brazilian labor movement, academic community, landless peasant organizations and urban activist groups.

RELATED: Brazilian Unions Slam Impeachment Proceedings Against Rousseff

In Brazil and South Africa, the trade union federations—the Unified Workers’ Central (CUT) and the Cosatu— provided the top leadership for the ruling Workers’ Party and the African National Congress, respectively.

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