Coronavirus: Brazilian President, Jair Bolsonaro Tests Positive For COVID-19

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive for COVID-19, the BBC reports, after taking a test on Monday after reportedly showing symptoms consistent with the disease.

The test was Bolsonaro’s fourth, and he also had his lungs scanned. The other three tests, he had previously said, were all negative. He tested negative for the virus in March after his communications secretary Fabio Wajngarten tested positive following a visit to U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

On Monday, he told supporters outside the presidential palace in Brasília that he had taken the test and warned that they could not get close to him. A statement from the president’s office had indicated that the results were due on Tuesday.

Bolsonaro has repeatedly downplayed the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country which has resulted in 1.6 million confirmed cases and more than 65,000 related deaths as of July 6.

His response to the COVID-19 pandemic has also come under criticism given the country’s statistics. He has told regional governors to ease lockdowns, vetoed parts of a law on wearing face masks and said that the economy cannot be sacrificed for the sake of public health.

He has also flouted health regulations several times making public appearances and occasionally greeting supporters in addition to not wearing a face mask at all or wearing it wrongly. Last month, a federal judge ordered him to wear a mask when out in public or face a daily fine of 2,000 reais ($375) if he continued to break the rules.

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