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Brazil’s Subsequent Protection Minister Is a Political Veteran, Revered by Navy

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Jose Mucio, a veteran politician recognized for his negotiating expertise, will probably be Brazil’s subsequent protection minister, tasked with smoothing over relations between the nation’s army and leftist President-elect Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

Lula introduced Mucio for the put up at an occasion in Brasilia on Friday, the place he named a number of different cupboard appointments, together with Finance Minister Fernando Haddad.

“I could not have anybody higher ready to take care of protection than my pal Jose Mucio,” Lula mentioned. “I am positive he’ll deal with the job and the Armed Forces will fulfill their principal mission to handle the nation’s safety.”

Outgoing far-right President Jair Bolsonaro gave the army a starring function in his authorities, with key ministries and 1000’s of jobs occupied by present and former troopers – an alliance unlikely to be repeated below Lula when he takes workplace subsequent month.

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Forward of the presidential election, Bolsonaro tried to get the army to publicly endorse him and his criticism of the digital voting system that he claimed was open to fraud. There was even concern on the time of Lula’s Oct. 30 election victory that the Armed Forces may not make sure the peaceable handover of energy.

However regardless of traditionally frosty ties with Lula, the army didn’t oppose his return to workplace, and so they haven’t acknowledged the continued demonstrations exterior military barracks by Bolsonaro supporters calling for a coup.

Two former military generals instructed Reuters that Mucio, a 74-year-old engineer, businessman and former head of the federal audit court docket (TCU), represented a sensible alternative by Lula, and mentioned his nomination had been properly obtained by the Armed Forces commanders.

“Mucio is a really balanced individual, with nice skill to resolve issues and simple to work with,” mentioned retired military Common Carlos dos Santos Cruz, a former Bolsonaro cupboard minister.

“I’ve heard no rejection of Mucio within the Armed Forces. He has the qualities that the army count on of a protection minister,” mentioned retired cavalry basic Paulo Chagas.

Lula takes workplace on Jan. 1.

Mucio would be the first civilian protection minister since 2018.

He has belonged to totally different political events and was authorities chief within the decrease home throughout Lula’s earlier 2003-2010 presidency, wherein he additionally held a cupboard place.

Lula appointed him in 2009 to the TCU federal audit court docket, which he presided over till his retirement in 2020.

“Mucio is a conciliator by nature. He’s the proper man, in the proper place on the proper time, and this can be a very good transfer by Lula,” mentioned Andre Cesar, a political marketing consultant with Maintain Legislative Advisors.

(Reporting by Eduardo Simoes and Anthony Boadle; Modifying by Frances Kerry)

Copyright 2022 Thomson Reuters.

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