October 11, 2019
Photo: France24

Former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva granted an exclusive interview to FRANCE 24 from the federal police headquarters in Curitiba, where he is imprisoned. Lula, who has already served a year and a half in jail for corruption, said he wants to “prove that the liars are the ones who have accused me”. “I don’t want a lighter sentence, I want my innocence”, the 74-year-old former leader told FRANCE 24’s Brazil correspondents.

Turning to environmental issues, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva said he believes his government “may have had the biggest policies for environmental preservation Brazil has ever had”. Asked about the current president, Jair Bolsonaro, Lula did not mince his words: “Bolsonaro doesn’t like the indigenous, he doesn’t like the rubber tappers, he doesn’t like trees, doesn’t like the Workers’ Party, doesn’t like poor people, doesn’t like trade unionists.”

Finally, asked about a possible candidacy for the next Brazilian presidential election, the former president refused to be drawn: “I won’t say I’ll be a candidate and I won’t say that I won’t be. I will let time pass and see what happens”, he said. On a more personal note, Lula told us: “I’m a 74-year-old man who feels I have the energy of a 30-year-old, and I want to get married when I leave here.”