Brazil ex-president calls impeachment of Rousseff a 'coup'

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Former President Michel Temer has surprised Brazilians by referring to the impeachment of his predecessor, Dilma Rousseff, as a "coup" for the first time.

Temer said on TV Cultura Monday night that he had "never supported or made a commitment to the coup" and had even tried to stop it.

Rousseff's backers have long called her 2016 ouster a "coup" while her foes insisted it was a justified impeachment vote to oust her.

Rousseff has said the impeachment was a maneuver by political rivals to get into power after more than a decade of leftist Workers' Party rule.

She was accused of improperly manipulating the budget and was replaced by then-Vice President Temer, whose party played a key role in Rousseff's ouster.