MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 20th October, 2021) An investigation by a Brazilian congressional panel concluded that President Jair Bolsonaro intentionally let COVID-19 kill at least 300,000 Brazilians in a failed bid to achieve herd immunity, the New York Times said on Tuesday, citing an official report set to be released later in the week.
The Brazilian leader is accused of mass homicide as his failure to timely respond to the pandemic and reluctance to introduce restrictive measures in fear of damaging the economy led to the deaths of some 300,000 people, or roughly half of the country's COVID-19 death toll, the report said as cited by the New York Times.
Among the actions that led to the escalation of the situation the report mentions Bolsonaro's encouragement of mass gatherings, skepticism towards wearing masks and vaccination, the daily said.
Based on the results of the investigation, the panel recommends bringing criminal charges against Bolsonaro and 69 other people involved in the decision-making at the early stages of the pandemic, including the country's current and former politicians and three of Bolsonaro's sons.
The investigation has been ongoing for six months, spearheaded by a special COVID-19 Senate committee. The hearings were broadcast in Brazil and featured testimonies of bribery and disinformation operations. The report comes at a time when Bolsonaro's ratings are plummeting, threatening his chances of re-election next year.