Brazilian senators vote to impeach president Dilma Rousseff

She will be replaced former vice-president Michel Temer, who has run the country since her suspension in May.

Brazilian senators vote to impeach president Dilma Rousseff

Brazil's Senate begins final session in the impeachment trial of suspended President Dilma Rousseff. Image: Eraldo Peres / AP/Press Association Images

Brazil's Senate has removed President Dilma Rousseff from office for breaking budget laws.

Senators voted 61-20 to oust Ms Rousseff, who was the country's first female president, from office.

The Workers' Party leader has been accused of using money from state banks to boost public spending, against budgetary rules.

She has denied any wrongdoing, and said previous leaders had used similar accounting measures.

The decision marks the culmination of a year-long impeachment battle that paralaysed Latin America's most powerful economy and laid bare deep rifts among the population on everything from race relations to social spending.

Her vice president, Michel Temer, who has run the country since Ms Rousseff was suspended in May, will now be sworn in to serve out the remainder of her term through 2018.

In a separate vote, senators decided she should not be barred from public office.

Motorists blared car horns in the capital Brasilia in celebration at the removal of a president whose popularity had plummeted since winning re-election in 2014.

In Brazil's largest city, Sao Paulo, fireworks were let off after news of the vote emerged.

Ms Rousseff maintained the impeachment process was aimed at protecting the interests of Brazil's economic elite and rolling back social programmes that have lifted millions of citizens out of poverty in the last decade.

Her opponents have hailed it as an opportunity to turn the page on a drawn out political crisis, the country's worst recession for generations and a corruption scandal at state oil company Petrobas.

Mr Temer has promised to boost Brazil's economy, which has shrunk for six consecutive quarters, and implement austerity measures to plug a record budget deficit.

However, he is likely to face strong opposition from Ms Rousseff's Workers Party, which has vowed to take to the streets in protest.