Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Latin America's Left Reacts to Brazil Coup
Ousted Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa | Photo: Reuters

Published 31 August 2016

For its part, Venezuela said it has decided “to freeze all political and diplomatic relations with a government that emerged from a parliamentary coup.”

The governments of Bolivia and Venezuela recalled their ambassadors and Ecuador recalled its representative to Brazil on Wednesday after the country's Senate voted to oust suspended President Dilma Rousseff from office in a move widely condemned as a coup.

In return, Brazil's Foreign Ministry said it will recall its ambassadors to both countries, according to a diplomatic source quoted by Reuters.

In a statement, the Ecuadorean government also condemned the Senate decision to oust Rousseff – who was elected president to a second term with a popular mandate of 54 million votes in 2014 – and announced plans to recall its representative in Brazil.

"Given these exceptional facts, the government of Ecuador has decided to call for consultations the charge d'affaires to the Republic of Brazil," the statement continues.

The statement dubbed Rousseff's removal from office a "spurious" process that failed to fulfill the constitutional requirement of proving that the president committed "crimes of responsibility" to justify impeachment. It also noted that Ecuador's government "cannot ignore the fact that many of the decision-makers in Rousseff's impeachment are being investigated for serious acts of corruption." Installed President Michel Temer, now-Foreign Minister Jose Serra, chief impeachment leader Eduardo Cunha and several other high-profile figures behind Rousseff's impeachment are embroiled in massive corruption scandals.

On his Twitter account, President Rafael Correa criticized the news of the coup immediately following the 61 to 20 vote to impeach Rousseff over charges of manipulating the budget and reiterated the country's condemnation of the decision.

For its part, Venezuela said it had decided “to freeze all political and diplomatic relations with a government that emerged from a parliamentary coup.”

"All solidarity with @dilma and the people of Brazil, we condemn the right-wing oligarchic coup, those who fight will prevail!"  said  Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Twitter.

"Never again will we lend legitimacy to these practices, which remind us of the darkest hours of our America," he wrote. "All of our solidarity goes out to our comrade Dilma, with Lula, and all of the Brazilian people."

The Ecuadorean government statement also warned that the widely condemned "soft coup" signals a threat to regional integration amid the reconsolidation of the right-wing with underhanded tactics after the socialist "pink tide" swept South America over a decade ago.

"These unfortunate events, unacceptable in the 21st century, pose a serious risk to the stability of our region and constitute a grave setback in the consolidation of democracy."

Ahead of the final impeachment vote, Bolivian President Evo Morales wrote on his Twitter account Tuesday that the South American country would also recall its embassador to Brazil.

"If the parliamentary coup against the democratic government of Dilma Rousseff is successful, Bolivia will summon its embassador," he wrote. "We defend democracy and peace."

In the wake of the vote in the Senate in May to suspend Rousseff from office to make her stand trial on route to the impeachment, Ecuador, Venezuela and El Salvador summoned their ambassadors to Brazil for consultations in protest of what they called a coup, while several other Latin American countries criticized the impeachment bid and expressed support for the suspended president.

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