Brazil's Lula says intelligence services failed ahead of Brasilia riots
Brazil Riots: The fresh remarks come as Lula's criticism of the military mounts, with the commander-in-chief condemning it in recent days for failing to act against the rioting Bolsonaro supporters.
Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said on Wednesday his intelligence services had failed on Jan. 8, when Brasilia buildings were stormed by supporters of far-right former President Jair Bolsonaro.
The fresh remarks come as Lula's criticism of the military mounts, with the commander-in-chief condemning it in recent days for failing to act against the rioting Bolsonaro supporters.
"We made an elementary mistake: my intelligence did not exist (that day)," Lula told TV channel GloboNews in an interview. "We have Army intelligence, Air Force intelligence, ABIN (Brazil's Intelligence Agency); none of them warned me."
Lula had previously said he suspected there was collusion by "people in the armed forces" in the insurrection, during which several thousand Bolsonaro supporters invaded and ransacked the Congress building, the presidential palace and the Supreme Court.
"I had the impression it was the beginning of a coup d'état," Lula said about the riot.
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The president stressed he would like to maintain civilized relations with Brazil's armed forces but noted they must not be politicized. He is set to meet with the Army, Navy and Air Force commanders later this week.
"I don't want to have problems with the forces, nor they with me. But those who want to be involved in politics should take off the uniform, resign from office and then enter politics," Lula said.
Earlier this week he dismissed more than 50 military officers guarding the presidential residence and the National Security Advisor's office, expressing his distrust in them after the Brasilia insurrection.