As Brazil gears up for its annual carnival celebrations, an event in São Paulo has been accused of glorifying crimes from the country’s dictatorship past.
Billed as “Brazil’s largest anti-Communist block party”, the carnival event “Dops Basement” is named after the Department of Political and Social Order, a police intelligence agency that tortured dissidents during the 1964-1985 military regime.
The online flyer bears the images of the Dops chief Sérgio Paranhos Fleury and the army colonel Carlos Alberto Brilhante Ustra, who were accused of commanding torture and death squads under the dictatorship.
Local prosecutors tried to stop the party, scheduled this weekend, but a judge overruled them, citing freedom of expression. The prosecutors are appealing the decision.
“The judge’s decision is an insult to all the families of those that were tortured and killed as well as the whole of the Brazilian population,” said Rose Nogueira, a torture survivor and director of São Paulo’s branch of the No More Torture NGO. During Brazil’s dictatorship, hundreds of political activists were killed or disappeared. Thousands more were tortured, including the former president Dilma Rousseff, who at the time was a Marxist urban guerrilla.
A 2014 report from Brazil’s Truth Commission found that torture was widespread under the military regime, including the use of electric shocks, beatings, crucifixion and sexual abuse.
“It’s ridiculous that during carnival – which is supposed to be a time of celebrating democracy – this group is choosing to celebrate crimes against humanity,” said Samia Bonfim, a São Paulo city councilwoman with the leftwing Socialism and Liberty party (PSOL).
For more read the full of article at The Guardian