Brazilians on Sunday observed 36 years since the Amnesty Law was enacted, a pivotal legislation that began the process of reparations for the countless victims of the 1964 military dictatorship, while allowing those forced to exile to return.
Organized by various social movements, dozens of people, including victims’ family members, took to the streets of Rio de Janeiro to reflect on the thousands who were murdered or disappeared by the regime, and to reject state brutality.
“This date is important in commemoration of what has happened after a 36-year fight. There is an amnesty that came after a law to reconstruct liberties. But on the other hand, it was a law that gave amnesty to the military who carried out torture, barbarities, and crimes against humanity. So it is an ambiguous law, that helped so many Brazilians who were in exile, but it is also a law that groups torturers with those who were tortured,” one protester told teleSUR.
Another demonstrator warned that repressive forces were trying to make a comeback in Brazil.
“Today Brazil is in a moment in which conservative forces and authoritarian thoughts are no longer in power. They try to reorganize with hateful, repressive and authoritarian discourse. We remember the fight of 36 years ago, it has now empowered the society that it represents, who fight to reaffirm democracy,” he said.The government of President Dilma Rousseff however still faces challenges amid mounting right-wing protests.