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Ministry: First Domestic Case of Chikungunya in Brazil

Brazil’s authorities on Tuesday reported the first domestically contracted cases of the mosquito-borne chikungunya virus, prompting the government to announce it was stepping up attempts to control the disease.

The joint disease, which causes high fever and painful arthritis, is endemic to Africa and south Asia but has been moving north as well as west.

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Lula Mobbed in Rio, Defends Govt. on Petrobras

Former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Monday rallied behind successor Dilma Rousseff as she battles to stay in power at next month's election amid a corruption scandal and a weak economy.

Lula was mobbed at a rally in central Rio as he made a vociferous defense of Rousseff, who is running neck and neck with environmentalist opponent Marina Silva ahead of October 5 polls.

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Rousseff Insists her Government Untainted by Brazil Oil Scandal

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has insisted a corruption scandal at state oil giant Petrobras does not involve her government, as she fends off a new threat to her re-election bid.

"I think this does not place the government under any suspicion, as nobody in the government has been officially accused of anything," Rousseff said in comments made Sunday and carried by newspapers on Monday.

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Brazil's Rousseff Hopes to Hang On for Lula Return

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, chasing re-election on October 5, is keeping her Workers Party (PT) seat warm for predecessor Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to return in 2018, the party chairman said Saturday.

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Four Killed, Two Inmates Beheaded in Brazil Prison Riot

Inmates rioting for better facilities in a Brazilian jail killed four fellow prisoners, decapitating two of them, and took two guards hostage, officials said Sunday.

The uprising took place in the Cascavel state correctional center in the southern city of Parana that currently holds 1,140 inmates, according to Elson Faxina, a state judicial spokesman.

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Lebanese Man, 40, Killed in Brazil

A 40-year-old Lebanese expatriate was killed in Brazil by an unknown assailant as he was heading to his work, media reports said on Sunday.

According to Voice of Lebanon radio (93.3), Ramzi Jaber, who hails from the southern village of Mhaibib in the town of Marjeyoun, was killed by an unknown assailant on the Ponte de Amizade bridge, which connects the Brazilian city of Foz do Iguaçu and the Paraguayan city of Ciudad del Este.

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Brazil Announces New $4.5-bn Credit Stimulus

Brazil's central bank said Wednesday it would ease banks' reserve requirements for the second time in less than a month, freeing up $4.5 billion to stimulate lending and boost the sluggish economy.

Under the new rules, banks will be allowed to use up to 60 percent of reserves for credit operations, an increase from the 50-percent limit announced on July 25.

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Silva Could Win Brazil Vote after Running Mate's Death

Environmentalist Marina Silva could unseat incumbent Dilma Rousseff in Brazil's presidential elections in October, a poll found Monday, reflecting an altered political landscape since Silva's running mate was killed in a plane crash.

Silva, a 56-year-old former environment minister, has moved into second place ahead of the October 5 first-round vote and would defeat Rousseff in an October 26 runoff, the poll by Datafolha found.

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Brazil Vote Veers into Unknown with Candidate's Death

The death in a plane crash of Socialist Party candidate Eduardo Campos has put an unpredictable spin on Brazil's presidential elections, opening the way for a popular environmentalist to challenge incumbent Dilma Rousseff.

The top two candidates, Rousseff and Social Democrat Aecio Neves, halted their campaigns as Brazil began a three-day period of national mourning for Campos, a 49-year-old former governor who had been running third in opinion polls when his jet crashed Wednesday en route to Sao Paulo.

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Brazil Presidential Candidate Campos Dies in Jet Crash, Rousseff Declares Mourning

Brazilian presidential candidate Eduardo Campos, a contender to unseat President Dilma Rousseff in October elections, died Wednesday when his campaign jet crashed in the city of Santos, killing all seven people aboard.

Campos, a 49-year-old socialist who had been running third in the polls, was flying to Sao Paulo to record a TV segment when his Cessna 560XL slammed into a gymnasium and several houses, breaking into pieces and igniting a large fire.

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