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Rousseff's impeachment trial: Brazil president's key ally faces graft charges on Day 2

Rousseff has denied any wrongdoing and has sworn to resist what she calls a 'coup'. In photo: Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff speaks at a women's conference on May 10, 2016. Photograph: (Getty)

WION Bras?lia - Federal District, Brazil Aug 27, 2016, 08.32 AM (IST)
Day two of suspended Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff's impeachment trial witnessed angry quarrels as Rousseff's key ally Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva faced corruption charges.

The trial in capital Brasilia began with much shouting leading to Supreme Court Chief Justice Ricardo Lewandowski putting the session on hold temporarily.

Senate president Renan Calheiros called the senate a "madhouse" following the incident.

About two-thirds of the senators have current or past brushes with the law, reported the country's corruption watchdog, Transparencia Brasil.

Rousseff, 68, is charged with taking unauthorised state bank loans to cover up budgetary shortfalls during her 2014 re-election.

She however claims to be a victim of the right-wing trying to attain power after 13 years of her leftist Workers' Party ruling the nation.
 
Rousseff, 68, is charged with taking unauthorised state bank loans to cover up budgetary shortfalls during her 2014 re-election.


A witness for the defense, economist Luiz Gonzaga Belluzo, insisted that Rousseff's ousting would be "an attack on democracy."

Rousseff will testify on Monday in her final defense attempt before the senators vote.

Workers' Party founder Lula faced problems after the police filed a request for corruption and money laundering charges against him on Friday in connection with the scheme at state oil company Petrobras.

His lawyer Cristiano Zanin Martins said that Lula was targeted by a politically motivated case.

"Once again there is an act that by a strange coincidence occurs at a politically important moment for the country," he told a news conference in Sao Paulo.

Prosecutors and a judge are yet to approve the recommendation for Lula to go to trial.

As for Rousseff, a vote would take place within 48 hours after the senators' final speeches and a pro-impeachment vote (two-thirds of the senate voting for it) would see her removed from office with immediate effect.

In case of Rousseff's impeachment, vice president Michel Temer will be sworn in.

(WION with inputs from agencies)
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