'Out with Temer!' Brazilian police fire tear gas, rubber bullets at pro-Rousseff protesters (VIDEOS)
Clashes have erupted in Brazil with police deploying tear gas and rubber bullets on protesters voicing their opposition to the country's new interim government. It follows the suspension of President Dilma Rousseff in a move that many are calling a coup.
Demonstrators hit the streets of Brazil's largest city, Sao Paolo, for a rally calling for the removal of acting president Michel Temer.
Footage from the streets showed police forcing protesters to the ground and officers using batons against demonstrators.
Some activists tried to occupy the building where the leader's regional office is situated.
The protesters are speaking out against the May suspension of President Dilma Rousseff, who now faces an impeachment trial. The move has been dubbed a coup by Rousseff's supporters, and many claim Temer plotted her downfall to stifle a corruption investigation into Petrobras, Brazil's state-owned oil enterprise.
Despite holding office for less than a month, Temer's presidency has been marred with scandal.
Transparency minister Fabiano Silveira resigned on Monday, after a leaked tape suggested he tried to derail corruption investigations into Petrobras. Temer's secretary is also accused of taking bribes.
Eduardo Cunha, the speaker of the lower house of Congress who spearheaded the impeachment campaign, was suspended after being accused of taking millions of dollars in bribes, using a New Zealand trust company to hide the money.
Temer's approval ratings are at rock bottom, with only 2 percent of the Brazilian population indicating they would vote for him if an election was held today. That's compared to 13 percent for Rousseff, according to research company Datafolha.
Speaking to RT, Brazilian journalist Pepe Escobar said Temer's presidency has been illegitimate from the beginning.
“I have defined the Michel Temer interim government in the first two days, in fact, as a walking dead government. He was already illegitimate from the start,” Escobar said.
“People who follow the internet in Brazil and independent blogs... they know all these scandals in full detail and at the moment everything is paralyzed because of an illegal impeachment coup,” he continued.
Escobar also said that in addition to Temer's government, the Brazilian people are also upset with the country's economy.
“The Sao Paolo stock exchange is not recovering like it was promised at the beginning of the Temer interim government, so it's a standstill and it's going down and down and down because more revelations are in store, because now this is part of an internal political battle in Brazil.”
Meanwhile, Rousseff awaits an impeachment trial in the Senate on charges of administrative misconduct, disregarding the federal budget, and corruption. Speaking RT last month, Rousseff called the impeachment a “coup” organized by the old Brazilian oligarchy. She vowed to fight the “coup” using all available means.
“Our constitution provides for an impeachment, but only if the president commits a crime against the Constitution and human rights,” Rousseff said. “We believe that it’s a coup, because no such crime has been committed. They put me on trial for additional loans [from state banks]. Every president before me has done it, and it has never been a crime. It won’t become a crime now.”