Brazil: Country hit by general strike over pension overhaul

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Published on 15 Jun 2019, 3:50
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Protesters hit the streets of Rio de Janeiro on Friday, as the country is seized by a general strike over President Jair Bolsonaro's proposed pension reform.

The pension overhaul includes plans to increase the minimum retirement age to 65 for men and 62 for women, and raise workers' pension contributions.

The strike caused disruptions as local transport services were halted, and clashes erupted when police used tear gas and stun grenades against protesters.

Protesters were seen with signs such as "Pension reform, the victim is you, worker!" and ""All power to the people, general strike."

One demonstrator, Maria da Conceicao, said that the government is acting "against women, against black people, against gays, against youth."

The strike, the first one in Brazil since Bolsonaro took office in January this year, was organised by unions and left-wing parties.

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