Venezuelan official among visiting VIPs

Country's Foreign Ministry official says Venezuelan people don't back Ahmadinejad's Israel threats.

AMISRAEL 224.88 (photo credit: Courtesy )
(photo credit: Courtesy )
A delegation of 70 parliamentarians and government leaders from 14 Latin Americans countries, including a Venezuelan foreign ministry official, are in Jerusalem this week to mobilize support for Israel and world peace. The five-day event, which is being organized by the Brazilian-based AMISRAEL organization in coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Knesset's Christian Allies Caucus, saw both Catholic, Protestant and Jewish supporters of Israel unite under the same umbrella group to work toward their goal. The delegation included Paraguayan Vice-President Luis Federico Franco Gomez, Argentinean Senator Carlos Alberto Rossi, President of the Columbian Supreme Court of Justice Francisco Javier Ricaurte Gómez, and Venezuelan Foreign Ministry official Roman Delgado Urrea, a former Venezuelan ambassador to Israel. Venezuelan president, Hugo Chávez, has allied himself with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has repeatedly called for Israel to be "wiped off the map." Urrea, who serves as a chief lawyer for human rights in the Venezuelan Ministry of Foreign Affairs said during his visit that the Venezuelan people do not support the Iranian President's desire to eradicate the state of Israel. The other Latin American government leaders participating in the conference, expressing astonishingly little knowledge about the Islamic Republic's nuclear program, voiced their strong support for the state of Israel. "I want to let you know that the Jewish people will not be alone," said Luis Federico Franco Gomez, the Paraguayan Vice-President. "In Israel one lives in imminent threat of war or danger but happily God has not allowed anything to happen, and we hope and pray that nothing will happen in the future," he added. The international director and founder of the non-profit AMISRAEL, Dr. William Soto said the goal of his organization was to promote world peace. "We are working towards peace of the whole human family," said Soto, a philosophic man who bases his faith in evangelical roots. "We have the [Biblical] promise that peace will come out of Jerusalem to all nations...and if work is not done, change cannot be expected," he said. AMISRAEL is a Christian pro-Israel organization that has drawn criticism in Latin America over its name, which means The People of Israel. It was established five years ago to bring together supporters of Israel across predominantly Catholic - but increasingly evangelical - Latin America under a secular umbrella. "This organization has put Israel in the news in Latin America in terms of peace and not just violence," said Luis Rodriguez, the group's spokesman. Daniel Gazit, Director and Liaison for the Foreign Ministry to the Communities of Latin America and the Caribbean agreed. "Since the establishment of this organization, we see an ever-increasing amount of public activity in Latin America on behalf of Israel," he said.