RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Former Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff says the corruption conviction of her mentor and predecessor Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is aimed at keeping him out of next year's presidential election.
In an interview with The Associated Press in Rio de Janeiro on Friday, Rousseff said no candidate allied with President Michel Temer has the votes to beat Silva, universally known as Lula.
Rousseff said only immediate direct elections could ease Brazil's political crisis after Temer was accused of corruption by the country's top prosecutor. Brazil's lower house of Congress will decide in August if he should be suspended and stand trial.
Rousseff was impeached last year for manipulating the fiscal budget and was succeeded by Temer. Silva was found guilty of corruption earlier this week.