Homeless movement protests mar Olympics football semi-final

Sao Paulo (Brazil), Aug 18 (IANS) Protests marred the semi-final match between Germany and Nigeria in the Olympic men’s football competitions here.

The match, played at the Arena Corinthians Stadium here on Wednesday, was marked by a protest against the government of the interim president Michel Temer, led by the Homeless Workers’ movement (MTST), reports Efe.

Nearly 5,000 gathered outside the stadium, known as Itaquerao, carrying signs saying ‘Temer Out’, according to the tournament organisers.

The protest was peaceful and escorted by military police which allowed the protesters to walk around the stadium during the match, in which the Germans prevailed 2-0 and thus will be facing host Brazil in the final at the Maracana stadium on Saturday.

Josue Rocha, MTST coordinator in Sao Paulo, said on Wednesday that “the lenses of the world are on Sao Paulo in an Olympic Games semi-final and the time was taken to make two complaints”.

The activist said that one is regarding the Olympic calamities: evictions and public expenditure and another is in relation to the “coup” that is underway in the country.

Social organisations backing the ousted country president Dilma Rousseff accuse Temer of orchestrating the movement which seeks the definitive dismissal of the ex-president in an impeachment trial scheduled at the end of this month.

MTST member Maria das Dores Cerqueira said it was “a very special day” so that the social movements gain international visibility.

“We take to the streets to say that the Olympic Games only leave a negative legacy for our country, especially for the working class who pays the bills on a daily basis, in addition to the ‘coup’ (against Rousseff),” she added.

–IANS

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