Brazilian leader suspended as Senate votes to impeach

May 12, 2016, 7:26 AM EDT
Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff
(Source: Agência Brasil Fotografias/flickr)

After a marathon session that lasted for more than 20 hours, Brazil’s senate voted 55-22 in favor of an impeachment trial for President Dilma Rousseff, thus putting an end to 13 years of rule by the left-wing Workers’ Party. Attorney general Jose Eduardo Cardozo described the move of removing a democratically elected leader as a “historic injustice" devoid of any legal basis. The trial is expected to last for up to six months, writes Reuters.

Soon after the announcement of the impeachment trial, celebrations began in several neighborhoods across Brazil.

The political implications of the decision overshadow its legal aspect, notes The Guardian. Rousseff, who enjoyed massive support when she first came to power, gradually saw her popularity erode as the country's economy worsened.

Rousseff, who is accused of manipulating national budget ahead of her 2014 re-election, “does not personally face corruption charges," observes Al Jazeera. Previous administrations in the country have done such “financial maneuvering with the support and approval of those parties that today impeached Rousseff," said Franciso Dominguez, head of the Centre for Brazilian and Latin American Studies at London's Middlesex University.