Anti-austerity protests break out across Brazil

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SAO PAULO: Demonstrators occupied Brazil’s finance ministry, flooded the center of Sao Paulo and went on strike in a string of cities on Wednesday to protest reforms to the cash-strapped country’s pension system. The biggest demonstration took place in the financial powerhouse Sao Paulo, where thousands of people filled a section of the main avenue. Addressing a cheering crowd organizers said numbered up to 80,000 people, the fiery former leftist president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said the government wants to “end the achievements of the working class over the past years.” In Sao Paulo, a strike by metro and bus workers in Sao Paulo earlier had paralyzed the morning rush hour. During a dramatic protest in the capital Brasilia, hundreds of activists burst into the finance ministry before the start of the workday, occupying the building until late afternoon. Police said they vandalized the ministry and broke windows.

AFP

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