In Brazil President Rousseff calls impeachment a 'coup'

Senators voted today to suspend her from office after being accused of manipulating  finances to hide growth deficit  ahead of her re-election in 2014. She however denies any wrong doing.

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Ms. Rousseff, 68, vowed to fight "injustice" through all legal means in a broadcast to thousands of her supporters. play

Ms. Rousseff, 68, vowed to fight "injustice" through all legal means in a broadcast to thousands of her supporters.

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President Delma Rousseff of Brazil has condemned her impeachment as a "farce" and  a "coup," denying a wrong doing.

Senators voted today to suspend her from office after being accused of manipulating  finances to hide growth deficit  ahead of her re-election in 2014.

The vote begins an impeachment trial against her which could drag for more than 180 days.

Vice-President Michel Temer will assume the presidency while she is serving her suspension.

Ms. Rousseff, 68, vowed to fight "injustice" through all legal means in a broadcast to thousands of her supporters.

"What is at stake is respect for the ballot box, the sovereign will of the Brazilian people and the constitution," she said flanked by her ministers at the presidential palace.

"I have made mistakes, but I have not committed any crimes. I am being judged unjustly, because I have followed the law to the letter," she said.

She branded the process "fraudulent," claiming her government was "undergoing sabotage."

Ms. Rousseff vowed to fight the charges against her and said she was confident she would be found innocent, the BBC reported.

After hours of debate, 55 of the 81 lawmakers voted in favour of impeachment while 22 voted against.

“We could no longer ignore these crimes and thus voted for impeachment,” Senator Álvaro Dias said. “Having been assaulted by incompetence and wrongdoing, Brazilians expect punishment.”

Attorney general Jose Eduardo Cardozo described the impeachment procedure as lacking a legal basis that the opposition wanted to remove a democratically-elected president.

He said lawmakers were  condemning an "innocent woman" and that impeachment was a "historic injustice," the BBC reported.

Senator Fatima Bezerra from Rousseff Workers' Party called the vote "a farce".

"Those who back this coup d'etat won't ever be forgiven," she added.

Outside Congress, where a metal fence was erected to keep apart rival protests, about 6,000 backers of impeachment chanted "Out with Dilma", while police used pepper spray to disperse gangs of Rousseff supporters, who hurled flares back. One person was arrested for inciting violence, Aljazeera reported.

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