April 2, 2020 / 7:43 PM / 4 months ago

Bolsonaro says coronavirus 'not all it's being made out to be'

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro looks at his watch while meeting supporters as he leaves at Alvorada Palace, amid coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Brasilia, Brazil, April 2, 2020. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro continued to downplay the coronavirus epidemic on Thursday, saying it is “not all it’s being made out to be” and denying that any hospital in the country has reached its full capacity due to the outbreak.

Speaking to church ministers outside his official residence in Brasilia, he urged state governors not to be so “radical,” warning that their confinement and quarantine measures are taking a heavy toll on the economy. He estimated that 60% to 70% of Brazilians will eventually contract the virus.

Reporting by Lisandra Paraguassu; Writing by Jamie McGeever; Editing by Sandra Maler

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