Widow of murdered LGBT+ politician in Brazil vows to combat hate with election win

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11/28/2020

Two years after the murder of popular Brazilian councilwoman Marielle Franco, her partner Monica Benicio has also won a council seat and vowed to fight for justice and LGBT+ rights. Franco, a Black openly gay Rio de Janeiro politician, and her driver Anderson Gomes were gunned down in 2018 in what investigators said appeared to be a political assassination. In a symbolic victory, her widow Benicio won a Rio city council seat this month, in local elections which saw candidates backed by the far-right President Jair Bolsonaro knocked out of the running in several key races. “The people gave us back on the ballot what they tried to take away with bullets,” said Benicio, 34, who had been planning to marry Franco at the time of her death. “We are approaching 1,000 days without justice for Marielle and Anderson and we will continue to demand answers from authorities,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

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