Brazil's Bolsonaro discharged after overnight hospital stay

In this file photo taken on January 28, 2022, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro gestures during the launching of a national program to provide voluntary civil service at Planalto Palace in Brasilia. (Photo: AFP)

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was discharged from hospital on Tuesday morning, having spent the night at a military clinic in Brasilia after feeling unwell, the country's communications minister said.

"The President has already been discharged and is doing very well," Communications Minister Fabio Faria tweeted.

The 67-year-old president, who has had recurring health problems since being stabbed in the abdomen during his 2018 presidential campaign, was admitted on Monday night to undergo tests, said federal lawmaker Marcos Pereira at an event the president had been expected to attend.

"I'm sure the president is fine," Pereira said, cited by local media. "It's just some extra tests he's doing."

First Lady Michelle Bolsonaro, who attended the event, also said her husband was "fine."

Due to the stab wound, the far-right leader has undergone at least four surgeries, including the placement and subsequent removal of a colostomy bag, which made him prone to intestinal issues.

He has also undergone other unrelated procedures during his presidency, including surgery to remove a kidney stone.

In January, Bolsonaro was hospitalized for two days in Sao Paulo with a partially blocked intestine.

The president, in power since 2019, was also admitted to hospital in mid-July with the same problem, staying for four days, although he did not undergo surgery.

In September 2018, a month before the first round of Brazil's presidential election, an attacker stabbed Bolsonaro in the abdomen at a campaign rally in the southeastern state of Minas Gerais, puncturing his intestine multiple times.

Bolsonaro lost some 40 percent of his blood and underwent emergency surgery in the near-fatal incident, which was carried out by a man later declared mentally unfit to stand trial.

The presidential communications office did not respond to AFP requests for information on the president's health after he was admitted to hospital Monday.

Bolsonaro, a Covid-19 skeptic who campaigned against quarantine measures because he believed them too damaging to the Brazilian economy and who reports that he is not vaccinated, contracted the virus in July 2020, coming down with mild symptoms.

The president is aiming for reelection next October, when he will most likely face off against leftist former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.