The Brazilian Senate is debating ahead of a vote on whether to try suspended President Dilma Rousseff for breaking the budget law.
A simple majority in the 81-seat Senate is needed to open an impeachment trial against Ms Rousseff. The debate is due to end around dawn on Wednesday. The Senate suspended Ms Rousseff in May over alleged illegal accounting practices. She says they were common practice under previous administrations.
If senators back an impeachment trial – as is expected – a two-thirds majority would be needed in the final vote, due in the week after the Olympics closing ceremony.
As the debate got under way, Supreme Court President Ricardo Lewandowski told senators that they were about to “exercise one of the most serious tasks under the constitution”.(BBC,2016)