Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho, who led the 1974 revolution in Portugal, has died

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Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho, who led Portugal’s ‘Carnation’ Revolution in 1974 against the authoritarian Estado Novo, has died at the age of 84, at the Military Hospital in Lisbon.

Portugal’s President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa highlighted what he called “the capital importance” of Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho, evoking him as “the top protagonist at a decisive moment in Portuguese contemporary history.”

Prime Minister António Costa also honoured the memory of Otelo Saraiva de Carvalho, praising his strategic capacity, dedication and generosity that were decisive for a “bloodless” Carnation Revolution

At dawn on 25 April 1974, under the code name ‘Óscar’, Carvalho directed the coup against then prime minister Marcello Caetano and brought about major social and political changes including the Portugese transition to democracy and the end of the Portuguese Colonial War.

It unexpectedly grew into a hugely popular civil resistance campaign.

The event gained its nickname after demonstrators offered carnations to soldiers when people took to the streets to celebrate.


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