The new Brasilian President Jair Bolsonaro.
(photo credit: REUTERS/PILAR OLIVARES)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Brazil's president-elect Jair Bolsonaro on Monday night, congratulated him on his election victory and said it would surely lead to a strengthening of ties between Israel and Brazil.
The ultra-conservative Bolsonaro – whose victory signifies a tectonic shift in Brazilian politics – is staunchly pro-Israel. During his campaign he promised to move Brazil's embassy to Jerusalem, and close the Palestinians embassy in Brazil, since Palestine is not a state.
He said during an i24 interview last month that Israel -- which he visited last year -- will be the first country he visits, and that he wants to develop closer ties with the Jewish state.
“I congratulated him on his victory,” Netanyahu said of his conversation with the new Brazilian leader. “ I told him I’m certain his election will lead to a great friendship between our peoples and a strengthening of Brazil-Israel ties. We are waiting for his visit to Israel.”
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