Former US President Donald Trump said Saturday he is endorsing Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro in Sunday’s presidential election.
Trump encouraged Brazilians to vote for the incumbent president against his rival Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in a video posted by Bolsonaro on Twitter.
“To the people of Brazil, you have a great opportunity to reelect a fantastic leader, a fantastic man, one of the great presidents of any country in the world. President Bolsonaro,” said the former US president.
“He’s done a absolutely incredible job with your economy, with your country. He is respected by everybody all throughout the world. So I strongly endorse President Bolsonaro. He will be your leader for hopefully a long time. He is taking your country to great heights and again, your country is now respected because of him all over the world. So go out and vote for Bolsonaro,” he said.
Bolsonaro thanked Trump and said, “today we are respected throughout the world” thanks to the support of the Brazilian people and “our determination to fight for Brazil’s interests.”
“And we count on the support of free and prosperous nations and no longer of socialist dictatorships, as in the past,” he wrote.
Anadolu Agency could not independently verify the video but Trump threw his support behind Bolsonaro in an earlier statement, saying: “BRAZIL, VOTE FOR JAIR BOLSONARO.”
“There is a VERY BIG Election taking place tomorrow, one of Worldwide importance… Jair Bolsonaro has my Complete and Total Endorsement. He will never let you down!” he wrote on Truth Social.
Lula, a former union leader, was a candidate during the 2018 presidential election until a corruption and money laundering conviction curtailed his political aspirations. He was sent to prison and Bolsonaro, a former army captain, won the presidency.
About 156 million Brazilians will head to the polls Sunday to cast ballots for the next president in a country where voting is compulsory.