In the News…

Posted by Vanessa Castañeda

The Secretariat of Human Rights and Citizenship has distributed an educational kit “50 years after the Coup-the Right to Memory and Truth” to 52 municipal schools. The kit contains educational books and documentaries about the dictatorship and its transition into democracy.

The São Paulo State Truth Commission “Rubens Paiva” will launch the book “Infância Roubada: crianças atingidas pela Ditadura no Brasil” (Robbed Childhood: children who were stricken by Brazil’s dictatorship) on the 5th of November 2014. The book is the result of several hearings in May 2013 that focused on the stories of mothers and children of political prisoners and disappeared during the dictatorship.

On 31 October 2014, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH) stated that Brazil has the obligation to sentence those responsible for the forced disappearance of Brazilians during the military dictatorship. The international institution issued a similar statement in 2010 regarding the Araguaia case (1972-1974) and specifically prohibited Brazil from using the Amnesty Law, instead requesting the direct trial of those guilty of forced disappearances, torture and murder.

Moreover, Judge Baltasar Garzón participated in the International Congress of Human Rights in Florianópolis and voiced strong critiques regarding the “auto amnesty” of the Brazilian military. The Spanish Judge has had a strong presence in international cases of crimes against humanity, including issuing the prison mandate of former dictator of Chile Augusto Pinochet [while he was in London for surgery], taking military torturers to trial in Argentina, investigating crimes during the Spanish dictatorship of Francisco Franco and seeking investigation of former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and his connection with Operation Condor.

On 1 November 2014, six days after the reelection of President Dilma Rousseff (PT), close to 2.500 people in São Paulo protested the electoral results. During the protest, there were a number of invocations of the dictatorship and the 1964 coup. Paulo Martins, who ran for Congress in the state of Paraná, told the crowd of protestors through a megaphone, “It’s undeniable that the PT is creating a dictatorship in our country”. Police investigator Sérgio Salgi, 46, said that “it’s necessary to return to militarism.”

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