More than 12,000 supporters of the radical left-wing leader Major Otelo Saraiva De Carvalho marched through Lisbon on Wednesday night (27 October) to army headquarters to demand his release from a military prison.
SVS: demonstrators marching through street in Lisbon, Portugal carrying banners, demanding freedom for jailed left-wing leader Major Otelo. (2 shots)
GV: demonstrators outside military headquarters.
SV and GVS: demonstrators chanting and waving banners (3 shots)
The GDUP said another "gigantic national gathering" would be held in front of Caxias prison near Lisbon, on Sunday (31 October), where Major Carvalho is serving his 20-day term.
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Background: More than 12,000 supporters of the radical left-wing leader Major Otelo Saraiva De Carvalho marched through Lisbon on Wednesday night (27 October) to army headquarters to demand his release from a military prison.
SYNOPSIS: Major Carvalho, aged 40, was the operational leader of the 1974 coup which toppled Portugal's right-wing dictatorship. He was imprisoned for 20 days on Saturday (23 October) for disobeying a military order forbidding him to make public political statements. "Immediate freedom for Otelo and jail for the fascists," the crowd chanted as they marched in orderly fashion through the streets. At one point in their march they fell silent as they filed past one of Lisbon's major hospitals.
Major Carvalho was runner-up in the June presidential elections, taking 16.5 per cent of the vote behind General Ramalho Eanes. General Eanes, then an unknown Lieutenant-Colonel, crushed a left-wing military uprising last November, and major Otelo is awaiting trail on charges connected with the revolt. Wednesday night's demonstration was organised by the Popular Unity Dynamiting Groups, the GDUP, which seeks to install a so-called popular power regime of workers and peasants in Portugal, by-passing Parliament and political parties.