Among the most controversial promises of Jair Bolsonaro’s presidential campaign was his pledge to loosen up Brazil’s gun laws. Now, less than two weeks into his term as head of state, Mr. Bolsonaro is set to issue a decree broadening Brazilian citizens’ access to firearms. An announcement is expected from the Ministry of Justice on Tuesday and the alteration to existing regulations would come into effect immediately.
Guns held great significance for Jair Bolsonaro throughout the 2018 election campaign. Besides promising to reform Brazil’s firearm laws, arguing that police officers should “shoot to kill” when dealing with criminals, and using his “finger guns” salute as a symbol of his candidacy, Mr. Bolsonaro also claimed he would “machine gun” his opposition.