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Brazil registers 46,860 more coronavirus cases, 990 deaths

Reuters/AFP/Rio de Janeiro
Filed on June 27, 2020
Brazil, coronavirus, cases, deaths, Health Ministry, Jair Bolsonaro, appeals, court ruling, face mask, public, pandemic
Gravediggers wearing protective suits prepare to bury the casket of a 63-year-old woman who died from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Vila Formosa cemetery, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, June 26, 2020.

(Reuters)

Meanwhile, President Bolsonaro appealed a court ruling Friday that requires him to wear a face mask in public during the pandemic.

Brazil registered 46,860 new cases of the novel coronavirus in the last 24 hours and 990 additional deaths, the Health Ministry said on Friday.

The nation has now registered 1,274,974 total confirmed cases of the virus and 55,961 deaths.

Meanwhile, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro appealed a court ruling Friday that requires him to wear a face mask in public during the coronavirus pandemic, calling it "unnecessary."

The attorney general's office, which represents the government in legal matters, said the ruling was redundant since face masks are already mandatory in Brasilia.

"This interference from the courts is unnecessary," a spokeswoman for the attorney general's office told AFP.

However, it is a regulation the far-right president has repeatedly flouted, as Judge Renato Borelli pointed out in his ruling Monday.

"The president has a constitutional obligation to follow the laws in force in the country," the judge wrote, ordering Bolsonaro to obey the regulation or face a 2,000-real (Dh1,341) fine.

The case was brought by a lawyer who said the president should be held to account for his "irresponsible behaviour."

Since the ruling, Bolsonaro has worn a mask at all public appearances.

Masks have been mandatory in public in Brasilia since April to curb the spread of the virus.

Bolsonaro regularly breaks the social-distancing measures in place in the capital, giving handshakes and hugs at rallies, hosting barbecues, hitting the shooting range and going out for hotdogs, generally without a mask.

The president, who has famously compared the virus to a "little flu," has railed against the measures state and local authorities are taking to fight it, arguing that business closures and stay-at-home measures are needlessly wrecking the economy.

So far, Bolsonaro has never been fined for failing to wear a mask.

But his former education minister Abraham Weintraub was fined 2,000 reals (Dh1,341) last week for attending a pro-Bolsonaro rally in Brasilia without one.


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