Brazil's Lula says easing gun access is not on his agenda, education is

Former Brazilian President and current presidential candidate Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva attends a campaign rally in Manaus
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BRASILIA (Reuters) - Presidential candidate Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Sunday said that if elected he will not issue new decrees aimed at further easing the use of guns in the country and instead called for measures to strengthen education.

"There will be no gun decrees in this country. There will be book decrees. There will be decrees to strengthen education," he said at a meeting with domestic workers in Sao Paulo.

The former president and current front-runner for the Oct 2. election said that some believe that the freeing up of gun sales is a positive change, but said that it will allow criminals to get their hands on them more easily and will no longer need to steal weapons from the police.

"They are buying new, zero-kilometre, discounted and legalized guns," he said. "I am 76 years old and never had any interest in owning a gun. I have faith in God and in my own behavior."

With the issue of several decrees making guns more flexible, right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro has aggressively used the subject as one of his main government showcases and also during his reelection campaign.

Some of the decrees he has issued have been questioned by Brazil's Supreme Court.

(Reporting by Ricardo Brito; Writing by Steven Grattan; Editing by Mark Porter)