Brazilian far-right ex-president Jair Bolsonaro has been hospitalized with abdominal pain, his wife said Monday, following reports he was receiving treatment in a Florida hospital a day after his supporters invaded the seat of power in Brasilia.
Brazil’s O Globo newspaper said Bolsonaro, 67, was admitted to AdventHealth Celebration acute care hospital outside Orlando, Florida, where the former president traveled two days before the end of his term on December 31.
Bolsonaro “is under observation in the hospital, due to abdominal discomfort stemming from the stabbing attack he suffered in 2018” during his winning presidential campaign, Michelle Bolsonaro wrote on Instagram.
The Orlando hospital did not immediately respond to an AFP inquiry.
The former leader snubbed the traditional handover of the presidential sash when the man who beat him at the polls, veteran leftist Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, took office on January 1.
He has been staying at the Orlando home of Brazilian former mixed martial arts champion Jose Aldo, a stone’s throw from Disney World.
News of his hospitalization came the day after far-right protesters invaded the presidential palace, Congress and Supreme Court in the Brazilian capital, trashing the buildings in scenes reminiscent of the January 6, 2021 attacks on the US Capitol by supporters of then-president Donald Trump, a Bolsonaro ally.
Bolsonaro took to Twitter Sunday night to condemn the “pillaging” in Brasilia, but rejected Lula’s claim he incited the attacks, defending the right to “peaceful protests.”
Bolsonaro has had a series of health problems stemming from the knife attack that nearly claimed his life during the 2018 campaign that brought him to the presidency.
He has undergone six surgeries since the stabbing, perpetrated by an attacker who was found mentally unfit to stand trial.