Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro Tuesday highlighted his policies, economic or otherwise, during his opening speech at the 76th United Nations General Assembly in New York City.
Brazil was on the brink of socialism, now our state companies are lucrative, said the South American leader, whose presence at The Big Apple drew controversy due to his stance regarding COVID-19 vaccination. “Since November, everybody who wanted to take the vaccine has been taken care of,” he said. “But our Government has a clear position against mandates of either vaccination or health passports,” he added.
“I come here to show a Brazil different from what the media points out. Brazil has changed a lot since we took office. There are no cases of corruption,” he went on.
“Brazil has a president who believes in God, respects the Constitution, and values and the family. Brazil's credibility has recovered in the world,” he stressed.
Regarding climate change, Bolsonaro reminded the audience that Amazonia “is equivalent to all of Western Europe; we have redoubled our efforts to eliminate illegal deforestation. Deforestation was reduced by 32% in August this year compared to August last year,” he explained.
“Our modern and sustainable agriculture with low carbon emissions feeds more than 1 billion people in the world and uses only 8% of the national territory. No country in the world has such comprehensive environmental legislation, he added.
Bolsonaro also addressed Venezuela's crisis and his administration's response thereto: “Our country has welcomed Venezuelans displaced by the crisis of a dictatorial state” and further underscored his humanitarian efforts saying Brazil would grant visas to Afghan Christians.
Regarding his management of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Brazilian leader insisted that “isolation measures have caused inflation. We ended 2020 with more jobs than 2019 and this year we created 1,800,000 new jobs,” he added.
Then he drew the spotlight towards internal affairs in Brazil: “On our independence day, Brazilians took to the streets to support our administration. Today we propose a world with more freedom, democracy, prosperity and peace. May God bless you all.”
Meanwhile, Brazil's Health Minister Marcelo Queiroga has tested positive for COVID-19 while in New York City as a part of Bolsonaro's entourage and will now need to stay in the United States under isolation. He became the second member of the presidential delegation to be diagnosed with COVID-19.
Brazil's Secretariat of Social Communication of the Presidency has said in a statement that Queiroga was doing well and that every member of the delegation had been tested with negative results, except for just one more case.
I let everyone know that I have tested positive for #Covid19 today. I will be quarantined in #US, following all health safety protocols,” Queiroga wrote on social media.
In the meantime, Rodrigo Cruz will perform as interim Health Minister.