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  • Brazil's former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's supporters demonstrate to demand Lula's freedom, in Curitiba, Brazil April 7, 2019.

    Brazil's former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's supporters demonstrate to demand Lula's freedom, in Curitiba, Brazil April 7, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 7 April 2019

Programs and protests have been organized worldwide on the first anniversary of Lula da Silva’s imprisonment.

People are gathering all over the world to commemorate the first anniversary of the imprisonment of former Brazilian President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva.

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The most revered leftist leader from Worker’s Party (PT) in Brazil, was arrested last year on April 7 prior to the country’s presidential election in 2018 which saw the victory of far-right Jair Bolsonaro.

Lula was arrested after being convicted in the Lava Jato corruption case by a Federal Regional Court. He is internationally recognized as a political prisoner. He has maintained his stance of innocence and determined to prove the same.

The judge who convicted Lula, Sergio Moro, became the minister of justice under Bolsonaro’s administration.

A  “Free Lula Caravan” organized by the PT, arrived in Curitiba, where Lula is being held as a political prisoner, Sunday, demanding Lula’s freedom.

In Curitiba, former presidential candidate of PT, Fernando Haddad, criticized the new minister of justice, saying that he "wears the shirt" of President Jair Bolsonaro and "justice cannot be twisted.”

"Lula is going through a political, illegal, unjust and arbitrary imprisonment... we are fighting bravely for him so that he can help us face what the current Government is doing with the country," Marcio Marcedo, the PT deputy chairman said and added that "the 'Free Lula' Caravan is a struggle in defense of the people and national sovereignty."

According to local media Brasil de Fato, over 17 capital cities confirmed their participation in the Free Lula campaign, which will also be supported in 15 countries around the world, including Spain, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, United States, Denmark, Sweden, Australia, etc.

Most of these events are scheduled to take place this afternoon, local times, while people in Brazil have already started gathering.

“The unfair smear campaign of which Lula is a victim has been sparking outrage in Brasil and abroad,” a statement released by the Free Lula Committee reads.

Igor Felippe, the Free Lula Campaign coordinator said, “If you believe Lula’s prison is arbitrary, if you believe it’s an injustice, if you believe Lula’s prison threatens democracy and civil rights, organise an activity, a meeting, a debate, a rally, a lunch, in defense of democracy and for Lula’s freedom…”

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