The frontier between Brazil and its crisis-ridden neighbour Venezuela has become a major migration route, a hotspot for crime and a flashpoint for violence. This is the first of three commentaries on Venezuela’s troubled borderlands.
Victory of far-right former army officer Jair Bolsonaro in presidential election 28 Oct raised widespread concerns over his past statements in support of authoritarianism, repression, state violence and economic nationalism; and for political reverberations of his win across region. During campaign dominated by issues of rising violent crime and political corruption, Bolsonaro praised Brazil’s 1964-1985 dictatorship, said he would give police “carte blanche” to kill suspects in anti-crime drive, and threatened “clean up” of political rivals, saying leftist “outlaws will be banished from our homeland”; victory also raised concerns over respect for rights of LGBT people, women and indigenous groups. Bolsonaro 29 Oct pledged to relax gun control and cut govt advertising funds for “lying” media outlets.
The frontier between Brazil and its crisis-ridden neighbour Venezuela has become a major migration route, a hotspot for crime and a flashpoint for violence.