On Thursday, in Curitiba, where former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is being held prisoner over unsubstantiated accusations of corruption, thousands of people marched and demonstrated to support his presidential candidacy.
The Workers Party (PT) summoned the march which was headed by former Sao Paulo mayor Fernando Haddad and by PT President Gleisi Hoffman. Both leaders expressed gratitude to the Brazilian people for their support and their solidarity for former president Lula.
Also, on Thursday, two international political figures visited the ex-president in the Curitiba location where he is being held in preventative prison. Both Boaventura de Sousa Santos, renowned sociologist, and former president of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, visited Lula.
Schulz expressed how impressed he was with "this brave, combative and optimistic man and how he is resisting these unfavorable circumstances." Sociologist de Sousa Santos said that he left the meeting with ex-President Lula "absolutely inspired. That is his greatness, the greatness of a man who knows how to inspire a country and all those who visit it."
"He is not Lula person, it is Lula idea, the idea of a country with hope in a more inclusive society, that has a future in front of him and that therefore the coup leaders will not prevail in any way ", completed the sociologist Boaventura de Sousa Santos.
Both Schulz and de Sousa Santos lauded Lula's strength and lucidity. "Lula is well, is strong, is thinking the country, is influencing the country from inside a cell. It is of greatness, of energy, of vitality, of lucidity," de Sousa Santos remarked.
"No power in this world can keep me from trusting this man," Martin Schulz added.
In the massive demonstration, in Curitiba, to show support for Lula's candidacy, Martin Schulz was present. During the march, Fernando Haddad, who is the vice-presidential candidate as well as Lula spokesman, said: "we are here for democracy and the people already know what they want: Lula in the first round."
"We will never renounce to Lula, we are here to demonstrate that our leader is unjustly imprisoned," Haddad added.
"We are in a very peculiar political situation. In the place of multilateralism and democracy, defended by the Lula and Dilma governments, we are experiencing, not only in Brazil, but in the whole world... the circumstances of the process against him throw great doubts," Martin Schulz said during the Curitiba rally.
The demonstrators, including the PT leadership and Martin Schulz, have urged the Brazilian Government to allow former President Lula to run in the October elections, in accordance to a United Nations' Human Rights Committee edict issued on Aug. 17. The statement from the UN was ratified by the Brazilian National Human Rights Commission (CNDH).