Bolsonaro seeks US visa despite Brasilia violence

Bolsonaro seeks US visa despite Brasilia violence

In this photo taken on January 10, 2023, Forensic investigators are framed by a cracked window damaged by supporters of Brazil's former President Jair Bolsonaro who stormed the Brazilian Supreme Court building in Brasilia, Brazil. Bolsonaro supporters who refuse to accept his election victory stormed Congress, the Supreme Court and presidential palace Sunday, a week after the inauguration of his leftist rival, President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. PHOTO AP WASHINGTON - Former Brazil president Jair Bolsonaro applied for a six-month tourist visa to remain in the United States despite calls for US visas held by Bolsonaro to be revoked after violent protests in Brasilia.

His lawyer, Felipe Alexandre, said on Friday that Bolsonaro will be in the United States while his application is pending.

He would like to take some time off, clear his head, and enjoy being a tourist in the United States for a few months before deciding what his next step will be, Alexandre said in an email to Reuters.

READ MORE: Over 1,500 Bolsonaro supporters arrested after the Brasilia riots.

It's up to him and whatever strategy we decide to embark on based on his plans as they develop, whether or not he will use the full six months, Alexandre said.

Bolsonaro had requested a tourist visa, according to the Financial Times.

A State Department spokeswoman said visa records are confidential under US law, and that the department can't discuss details of individual visa cases.

The far-right Bolsonaro flew to Florida two days before his term ended on January 1 and leftist President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva took office before the former president's supporters stormed the country's capital.

Supporters of Bolsonaro ransacked Brazil's Congress, Supreme Court and presidential palace, calling for a military coup to overturn the October election that Lula won.

Brazil's Supreme Court has agreed to start an investigation into Bolsonaro for allegedly encouraging anti-democratic protests that ended in the storming of government buildings by his supporters in Brasilia.

READ MORE: Brazil police amass at camp of Bolsonaro's backers after riot.

41 Democratic members of the US House of Representatives asked US President Joe Biden's administration to cooperate with Brazil's investigation into violent protests in Brasilia and revoke any US visas held by Bolsonaro earlier this month.

The State Department has stated repeatedly that it is not going to discuss specific visa cases.

The State Department said it was incumbent on an individual who entered the United States on a so-called A visa reserved for diplomats and heads of state to leave the country within 30 days or apply for a change of immigration status if they are no longer engaged in official business. Bolsonaro is believed to have entered on such a visa.