Portugal's first free Presidential election campaign has been marred by the death of a man during a riot.
Portugal's first free Presidential election campaign has been marred by the death of a man during a riot. Fighting broke out when supporters of one candidate, Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho, tried to drag another candidate, Antonio Ramallah Eanes, from his car after a rally.
SYNOPSIS: Thousands of people turned out to see General Eanes arrive for the rally at the bullring in the southern town of Evora. The General is strong favourite to win the Presidential election on 27 June and has the support of three of the country's main parties - the Socialists, the Centre Popular Democrats and the Conservative Centre Democrats. But support for the General is not unanimous throughout the Enora region.
The area is a communist and extreme left-wing stronghold, with many people giving their support to Major Carvalho in the Presidential campaign. It was General Evaes who crushed an abortive left-wing coup last November which had been led by Major Carvalho. The Major's Presidential champaign has aroused a strong spirit of nostalgia for the days that followed the coup in April 1974 which overthrew the old right-wing dictatorship of Marcello Caetano. Major Carvalho also masterminded that uprising and personally led the troops.
Riot police were expecting trouble and were on standby outside the bullring where supporters of Major Carvalho had gathered. Earlier in the day General Eanes toured the Evora region and had stones thrown at his car. The Major's supporters claim that the present government have lost sight of the principles behind the April 1974 coup. They also believe that if General Eanes becomes the new President, the country will move back to the right politically. Fighting broke out as the General tried to leave the rally and police eventually charged into the crowd. One man died later from a bullet wound in the stomach and it was not immediately known who had fired the fatal shot. Police said they did not open fire and eyewitnesses said the only shots came from General Eanes' security guards.