Even with Brazil’s escalating COVID-19 cases and more than 13,000 deaths so far, its populist president Jair Bolsonaro just keeps downplaying the threat. He actively discourages social distancing and has fought to keep Brazil open since the outbreak began — even making appearances at anti-lockdown rallies.
Arthur Virgilio Neto, for one, wishes the president would stay home and shut up. The mayor of Manaus, the capital of the state of Amazonas, is just one of many local politicians who has openly criticized the federal government’s response, or lack thereof, to the crisis. “To open our economy, it would be genocide,” Neto told VICE News.
VICE News visited Manaus to witness the extent of the crisis on the edge of the Amazon.
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