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Montevideo, June 18th 2019 - 12:53 UTC

 

 

Bolsonaro cancels trip to New York where he was to be honored as “Person of the Year”

Saturday, May 4th 2019 - 09:53 UTC
Full article 33 comments
President Bolsonaro would no longer attend the dinner, said his spokesman General Otavio Rego Barros President Bolsonaro would no longer attend the dinner, said his spokesman General Otavio Rego Barros
Several venues in the city have decided not to host the event. His spokesman blamed New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and the “pressure of interest groups”. Several venues in the city have decided not to host the event. His spokesman blamed New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and the “pressure of interest groups”.

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro has cancelled a planned trip to the United States after protests from gay rights and environmental campaigners. Mr Bolsonaro was due to attend a ceremony in his honor in New York later in May organized by the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce.

Several venues in the city have decided not to host the event. His spokesman blamed New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and the “pressure of interest groups”.

The American Museum of Natural History had originally agreed to hold a gala dinner for the Brazilian president, But it drew heavy criticism for agreeing to host a ceremony at which Mr Bolsonaro, who has advocated relaxing environmental policies, was scheduled to receive a person of the year award.

Other sponsors, including Delta Airlines, the Financial Times newspaper and management consultancy Bain & Co, have pulled out of the event.

“We have decided to withdraw our sponsorship of the ... 2019 Person of the Year Awards Gala Dinner,” Bain said. “Encouraging and celebrating diversity is a core Bain principle.”

President Bolsonaro would no longer attend the dinner, said his spokesman General Otavio Rego Barros, because of “the resistance and deliberate attacks by the mayor of New York and the pressure of interest groups” on the organizers of the event.

The Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce, a non-profit non-governmental organization that promotes trade, investment and cultural ties between the two countries, planned to honor the Brazilian president at a gala dinner.

At the annual event, the chamber gives out its person of the year awards. This year one of those prizes is due to go to Mr Bolsonaro, who was sworn in as Brazil's president on 1 January.

On its website, the organization said it had chosen the far-right leader in recognition of “his strongly stated intention of fostering closer commercial and diplomatic ties between Brazil and the United States and his firm commitment to building a strong and durable partnership between the two nations”.

Previous recipients of the award have included former US President Bill Clinton and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Climate activists and environmental organizations such as Greenpeace have denounced Mr Bolsonaro as “a threat to Brazil's ecosystem”.

Most of those opposed to having the museum host the event pointed to the president's plans to open up parts of the Amazon rainforest for development, which they argued was not in keeping with the museum's mission.

In a radio interview on 8 April, President Bolsonaro said he wanted the US to join in a development plan for the Amazon region. He also said that demarcations of indigenous reserves hampered development of the region and that he would abolish them if he could find a way to legally do so.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said President Bolsonaro was a “very dangerous human being”. Mr de Blasio told radio station WNYC last month: “He's dangerous not just because of his overt racism and homophobia, but because he is unfortunately the person with the most ability to be able to impact what happens in the Amazon going forward.”

Back in Brazil and in related news the Brazilian president raised his shirt to show the scar of the election campaign attack with a knife.

During the TV interview, Jair Bolsonaro raised his shirt to show the scars of the surgery he underwent earlier this year due to the stabbing he suffered during the 2018 election campaign.

“Some people say it was fake,” Bolsonaro told SBT Brasil ironically in Thursday interview.

Categories: Politics, Brazil, United States.

Top Comments

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  • :o))

    Person of the Year saves money!

    May 04th, 2019 - 01:00 pm 0
  • DemonTree

    Aww, Chicureo will be so disappointed.

    At least they finally explained why Bolsonaro was their 'person of the year', and it's a reason that makes sense...

    As for faking the attack, why on earth would he fake being stuck in hospital for several weeks while his allies started in-fighting? No one would choose to begin their presidency that way.

    May 04th, 2019 - 05:41 pm 0
  • Jack Bauer

    The award is all about the “stated intention of fostering closer commercial and diplomatic ties between Brazil and the United States”.......but since it's become politicized, and has deviated from its purpose, I think he's taken the right decision to not attend.

    Who needs a bunch of idiots protesting outside their door, led by Mr. Bill de Blasio ?

    May 04th, 2019 - 09:38 pm 0
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