The slogan of the rally, organized by the association Proarmas, was “freedom”, the “right to self-defense, choice and security”, as well as a further relaxation of the legislation on weapons.

Edouard Bolsonaro, deputy and son of the Brazilian president, spoke in front of the demonstrators gathered on the esplanade of the ministries in Brasilia.

“The left never imagined that so many people could take to the streets to say: yes, I want to be armed because I would rather the bandits end up underground than my wife be raped.”

The number of Brazilian citizens who obtained a license to own a firearm increased by 474% from 2018 to 2022, during which time the Bolsonaro government relaxed the standards on this subject.

Since coming to power, Jair Bolsonaro, a former army captain, has issued several decrees to ease access to firearms, including allowing more guns to be owned and more ammunition to be purchased.

Some of these decrees are being analyzed by the Supreme Court, which must decide whether they are constitutional or not.

André Lago, 45, one of the demonstrators, believes that “any dictatorship begins with the disarmament of the population”. “We want everyone to have the freedom to be able to defend their property and their family,” said the Portuguese teacher, wearing a militant T-shirt for “Bolsonaro president 2022”.