Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was invited by Lula to visit Brazil last May. Following protests in all major cities in the country by Christian, Jewish, candomblé, gay rights, women’s, and human rights groups, Brazil’s Foreign Office announced that the trip had been canceled. The Foreign Office claimed that Ahmadinejad had requested that the visit be postponed until after the Iranian elections in June. No reason was given for the cancellation.
The trip has been rescheduled for November 23, and Ahmadinejad is to arrive next Monday.
About 1,500 people took part this Sunday afternoon, November 15, in São Paulo, southeastern Brazil, in a protest against the visit to Brazil of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad scheduled for November 23. The demonstration occurred in Arcos square and reunited several social movements and religious groups.
Besides São Paulo, other nine Brazilian capitals also had demonstrations against the Iran leader’s visit. They happened in Belo Horizonte (Minas Gerais), Cuiabá (Mato Grosso), Curitiba (Paraná), Goiânia (Goiás), Manaus (Amazonas), Boa Vista (Roraima), Belém (Pará), Rio Branco (Acre) and Porto Velho (Rondônia).
The protests were called by the Front for Freedom in Iran, a just-created organization that brings together pacifist, anti-racist and human rights organizations. Jewish groups and evangelical and afro-Brazilian leaders also participated.
According to FLI, the protests are against Teheran’s fundamentalist regime and Ahmadinejad’s policies, “which oppress women, homosexuals and political dissidents.”
Reinaldo Azevedo, blogging at Revista Veja (link in Portuguese), calls Ahmadinejad The Murderer, and points out that Ahmadinejad’s arrival is six days after five people were sentenced to death and eighty-one were sentenced to prison for participating at protests against electoral fraud.
Azevedo also posted the video of the death of Neda Soltani, who was killed during a protest:
Another good way to repudiate the presence of this man in Brazil is to rub his nose on Neda’s image. He is her murderer.
Video below the fold (WARNING: it does show her death)