The unrest surrounding Brazil’s deteriorating press freedom intensified on Monday after staunch Jair Bolsonaro loyalists rebuked and hurled a flurry of profanities on journalists reporting from outside Palácio da Alvorada in Brazil.

Things escalated further when footage surfaced online, shedding light on the torrent of abuses from Bolsonaristas directed at a volley of reporters -- calling them “scum, rats, extortionists, rogues, crooks and sons of bitches.” The video sparked widespread fury and concerns about the security of journalists, pushing scores of media groups to withdraw their press staff from working there.

A statement released by one of Brazil’s most prominent media organizations, read: “The lack of security for its journalists outside the Palácio da Alvorada has led Grupo Globo to decide that its professionals will no longer work there.”

Several public figures expressed their contempt for Bolsonaro, after the statement was released online.

Manuela D’Ávila, from the Communist Party of Brazil tweeted:


Thinking along similar lines, Vera Magalhães, a prominent political journalist tweeted:

Attacks on media persons have become commonplace since the far-right president took office on January 1, 2019. Bolsonaro, who’s infamous antics have appalled millions since the outbreak, has time and again amassed severe backlash for instigating supporters to abuse the press. Bolsonaro’s third son has been accused of following in on his President father’s footsteps -- and is known for his regular attacks against what he calls “extrema imprensa (extreme press)."

This development arises amid Brazil’s battle against a global health crisis -- that the country seems to be losing to. With medical experts predicting a ghastly spike in the numbers -- touching the 100,000 mark by August in the coronavirus outbreak. The poor testing capacity compounded by government indifference has put the country in the second spot among countries to be hardest hit by the pandemic.

The White House imposed a travel ban on Tuesday, that prevents the entry of Brazilians to the United States of America. The temporary ban (to contain the spread of the virus) doesn’t apply to the citizens of the United States of America or family. Despite the ban, trade relations between the countries will remain unaffected.

Jair Bolsonaro
Jair Bolsonaro, presidential candidate for the Social Liberal Party, attends an interview for Correio Brazilianse newspaper in Brasilia, June 6, 2018. Getty Images/ EVARISTO SA

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