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Originally published Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at 11:54 AM

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Head of Brazil's HR Commission refuses to resign

The president of the Commission for Human Rights and Minorities of the lower house of Brazil's Congress says he will not step down despite mounting pressure from critics who say he is homophobic and racist.

The Associated Press

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BRASILIA, Brazil —

The president of the Commission for Human Rights and Minorities of the lower house of Brazil's Congress says he will not step down despite mounting pressure from critics who say he is homophobic and racist.

Marco Feliciano, an evangelical pastor, Tuesday told reporters: "I will remain. I was elected democratically. Let me do my job."

He reversed his decision made last week banning the presence of outsiders from the commission's sessions to keep out protesters demanding his resignation. However, he warned he would order closed door sessions should protesters appear.

On his Twitter page, Feliciano recently said that AIDS was a "gay cancer" and that Africa has been "cursed since the times of Noah," which explains the poverty, violence and disease afflicting that continent.

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