Anti-World Cup protest puts Sao Paulo business district on edge

admin   •   May 23, 2014   •   2248

Members of Brazil’s Homeless Workers’ Movement (MTST) walk during a protest against the World Cup in Sao Paulo May 22, 2014.
CREDIT: REUTERS/NACHO DOCE

(Reuters) – Several thousand demonstrators marched through an expensive business district of Brazil’s largest city on Thursday to protest against urban developments for the soccer World Cup that they say have left many homeless.

“I don’t want a World Cup in Brazil, I want a roof,” they chanted as they passed the luxurious Iguatemi shopping center, demanding government housing for those who have been pushed out of their homes by soaring real estate prices.

“You can send in troops, but if you don’t look after the people there will be no Cup,” a banner said.

The demonstration took place peacefully, although it snarled traffic and forced shops to close. Other recent protests have seen clashes with police and rioting, raising fears that violence could disrupt the World Cup that kicks off in three weeks at Sao Paulo’s new Arena Corinthians stadium.

The march was organized by a group called the Homeless Worker’s movement, which represents 4,000 families living in a tent city on land a few miles from the stadium that they say priced them out of their working class neighborhood.

Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff has promised the squatters low-cost government housing to resolve the dispute. But her government has warned that it will call in troops if necessary to prevent protests disrupting the soccer games.

Authorities in the 12 cities hosting World Cup games are bracing for a repeat of last year’s massive demonstrations by Brazilians angered by the high cost of building stadiums instead of improving deficient public services.

Organizers of Thursday’s march said they would continue protesting during the World Cup.

“We aren’t against the World Cup itself but against the billions of reais that were spent,” said a woman who identified herself by her first name, Waldirene. “They could have invested in healthcare, transportation and housing, which we badly need.”

She said she would still root for Brazil in the World Cup. “Of course! At the end of the day, I’m still Brazilian.”

(Reporting by Asher Levine; Writing by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Ken Wills)

DA lifts temporary ban on mechanically deboned poultry meat from Brazil

Marje Pelayo   •   September 7, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) announced Monday (September 7) that it is partially lifting the temporary importation ban on mechanically deboned poultry meat (MDM) from Brazil.

This, after the agency conducted a review of the measure based on available information provided by Brazilian authorities. 

The Brazilian government submitted documentary requirements ensuring the strict implementation of plans for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) prevention, infection control and occupational safety and health relative to the operations of foreign meat establishments. 

Agriculture Secretary William Dar clarified however, that the lifting of the temporary import ban only applies to  foreign meat establishments without a single worker that is COVID-19 positive.

The importation must be accompanied by a veterinary health certificate which proves that the meat was handled and processed in facilities with functional food safety management system and where stringent hygiene and sanitation measures are practiced. 

Likewise, the poultry products must carry a safe handling label and all importation must be for the sole use of an accredited meat processor. 

The DA warned that all shipments into the country that do not comply with the above conditions shall be confiscated.

NAIA Customs on alert after DA bans virus-contaminated poultry products from Brazil

Marje Pelayo   •   August 17, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Customs (BOC) at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) heightened its alert status against possible entry of poultry products from Brazil.

This measure followed the recent order by the Department of Agriculture (DA) to temporarily prohibit the entry of such products after shipments of chicken wings from Latin American countries were found positive for coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

In pushing with the standing order of Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero to strengthen border control in all ports amidst continuing threats of COVID-19 virus, BOC-NAIA personnel are committed 24/7 to guard the country’s primary airport and its warehouses against attempts to import poultry products from Brazil in compliance with the latest advisory.

Since January of this year Port of NAIA has confiscated a total of 775.6 kgs of meat products without permits which arrived from African swine fever (ASF)- affected countries.

BOC-NAIA vows to continue to strengthen vigilance against entry of illegal goods and imports that pose health risks and will ensure safeguards to protect Filipino consumers, said District Collector Carmelita Talusan. 

Brazil’s Bolsonaro seen without face mask as first lady tests positive for COVID-19

UNTV News   •   July 31, 2020

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was seen removing his face mask at a public event after his wife tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday (July 30), and the spread of the novel coronavirus showed no signs of slowing in the country with the world’s second-worst outbreak after the United States.

Just days after her husband said he had overcome the virus with a negative test following weeks in quarantine, Bolsonaro’s wife Michelle has tested positive, the presidential office said in a statement.

“First lady Michelle Bolsonaro tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday. She is in good health and will follow all established protocols,” it said, referring to the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

Their infections are a palpable sign of the scale of the outbreak in Brazil, which set fresh daily records on Wednesday (July 29) for new COVID-19 cases and related fatalities.

The 69,074 new confirmed cases and 1,595 additional deaths reported by the Health Ministry, pushed the country past 2.5 million infections and 90,000 killed.

Pontes made his announcement on Facebook, saying he was quarantining and working remotely. (Reuters)

(Production: Sergio Queiroz, Leandra Camera, Liamar Ramos)

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