Judge allows commemorations of Brazil’s 1964 military coup

March 31, 2019
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Armed forces take part in a ceremony to commemorate the 1964 military coup that began the last Brazilian dictatorship, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Thursday, March 28, 2019. President Jair Bolsonaro, a former army captain who waxes nostalgic for the 1964-1985 dictatorship, on Monday asked Brazil’s Defense Ministry to organize “due commemorations” to mark the upcoming 55th anniversary of Brazil’s 1964 military coup. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A Brazilian federal judge Saturday overruled a lower court ruling that had banned celebrations called by far-right President Jair Bolsonaro to mark the 55th anniversary of the coup that instituted the country’s 1964-1985 military regime.

Judge Ivani Silva da Luz banned celebrations on Friday, saying they were not “compatible with the process of democratic reconstruction”.

But on Saturday, Judge Maria do Carmo Cardoso overruled da Luz and said there were no “objective reasons” for prohibiting Sunday celebrations.

Bolsonaro is a former army captain who has sparked controversy with racist, homophobic and misogynistic comments and has praised the authoritarian regime that followed the military overthrow of President Joao Goulart on March 31, 1964.

“I do not see any human rights violations nor any violations to the principles of legality,” Cardoso said in her ruling.

“Military units have hosted similar commemorations in the past, causing no negative impact on the community,” she added.

Bolsonaro’s decision was condemned by human rights activists and social groups that have said they will stage protests in s several cities on Sunday.

A 2014 report by the country’s truth commission concluded that at least 434 people were killed or disappeared during the military regime.