President Dilma Rousseff struck a cautious tone during a speech at the United Nations as she avoided explicitly mentioning a process to oust her and said Brazil will be able to overcome its political crisis.
“Brazil is a large country with a society that was able to defeat authoritarianism and build a vigorous democracy,” she said ahead of the signing of a UN climate treaty in New York. "Our people are hard-working and freedom-loving, I have no doubt they will know how to prevent any setbacks."
Opposition leaders feared that Rousseff, whose impeachment process was approved by Brazil’s lower house of Congress on Sunday, would use the UN as a global stage to reiterate assertions she was facing a “coup against democracy.” She is expected to defend her position more forcefully when she meets the press in New York later on Friday.
Vice President Michel Temer, whom Rousseff has accused of “masterminding the coup” to oust her, said in interviews with foreign media that the impeachment process is in accordance with Brazilian law and that stating the opposite hurts the country’s image abroad. Opposition legislators, including Jose Carlos Aleluia and Luiz Lauro Filho, also traveled to New York this week to counter Rousseff’s allegations.