Brazil coronavirus: Judge orders Bolsonaro to wear a face mask in public

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro rides a horse during a pro-government demonstration on May 31 in Brasilia.

Federal Judge Renato Borelli issued a decision Monday, saying Bolsonaro must wear a mask when circulating in public in Brasilia. The judge’s order said failure to do so could potentially lead to a fine of up around $386 per day.

The decision extends to all government employees in the Federal District, where the capital Brasilia is located.

Reached for comment on Tuesday, Bolsonaro’s office referred CNN to Attorney General, who replied that its office was “studying all the appropriate measures to reverse the injunction.”

The Federal District government had issued a decree on April 30th making the use of face masks in public spaces mandatory, in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

But Bolsonaro has since appeared in public at several events without wearing a mask, including at rallies with supporters.

“With the example of the president of Brazil, everything is more difficult for us,” Sao Paulo governor Joao Doria told CNN’s Isa Soares last month. “He goes to the streets without masks. A wrong behavior and wrong indication. This is very sad for Brazil and makes everything more difficult for the governors in the states of Brazil.”

So far, more than 1.1 million cases and more than 51,000 deaths have been confirmed by Brazilian health authorities, and the crisis shows no sign of abating.

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