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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro supports the government’s decision to partially hide data on COVID-19 cases, DW reported.

Earlier, on the evening of June 5, the Brazilian health ministry restricted access to the website reflecting the rate of COVID-19 spread in individual states and cities of the country. Besides, the ministry ceased reporting changes in the total number of confirmed cases, Reuters reported.

“The cumulative data ... does not reflect the moment the country is in,” Bolsonaro tweeted referring to a note from the ministry. “Other actions are underway to improve the reporting of cases and confirmation of diagnoses.”

The government drew criticism for pushing back the release of its daily statistics.

“Transparency of information is a powerful instrument for combating the epidemic,” wrote Paulo Jeronimo de Sousa, head of the Brazilian Press Association, in a note accusing the government of “trying to silence the press at this late hour.”

Later, TASS reported that the Johns Hopkins University on Saturday night retrieved data for Brazil.

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