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Brazil's New President Vows to Move Brazilian Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem

Brazil's New President Vows to Move Brazilian Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem

Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil’s far-right president elect, recently disclosed plans to move Brazil’s embassy to Jerusalem.  

“As previously stated during our campaign, we intend to transfer the Brazilian Embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem,” Bolsonaro stated in a Facebook post on Thursday.  “Israel is a sovereign state and we shall duly respect that.” 

In an interview with Israel Hayom, Bolsonaro said, “When I was asked during the campaign if I’ll do it [relocate the embassy] when I was president, I said yes, and that you’re the ones who decide on the capital of Israel, not other people.” 

U.S. president Donald Trump, who moved the United States embassy from Tel Aviv to Israel as well, weighed in on Bolsonaro’s decision on Twitter writing, “Had a very good conversation with the newly elected President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonsro, who won his race by a substantial margin. We agreed that Brazil and the United States will work closely together on Trade, Military, and everything else! Excellent call, wished him congrats!” 

“I praise my friend the incoming Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, for his intention to move Brazil’s embassy to Jerusalem,” stated Israeli president Benjamin Netanyahu.

The quarrelsome transition from Tel Aviv was not well-received by many Palestinians, as well as by a few Western allies who have apprehensions that the switch will only further weaken the region and impede the peace process. 

“In the case of recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, for example, it would be throwing away $6 billion per year in poultry sales to Arab countries,” stated Rubens Barbosa the former Brazilian Ambassador to the U.S. “There will be people to advise him on the impacts and he will listen,” he added.

Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison also recently announced that he is considering moving the Australian embassy of Israel to Jerusalem as a part of the two-state solution which aims to separate warring parties.

Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Buda Mendes/Staff