and of course it came down to,
Lula criticises Israeli policies
Brazil’s president has criticised Israeli policies towards the Palestinians, warning that Israel’s separation barrier, its blockade of Gaza and its continued settlement building was extinguishing “the candle of hope”.
Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva made his comments while on a visit to the West Bank where, on Wednesday, he placed a wreath on the tomb Yasser Arafat, the late Palestinian leader.
What Lula terms his “mission of peace” began in Israel on Tuesday, and is the first visit by a sitting Brazilian president to Israel and the Palestinian territories.
Brazil is Israel’s largest trading partner in Latin America, but it also has close ties to Iran and Lula has defended Iran’s nuclear ambitions, which Tehran says are peaceful but which Israel sees as a potential threat.
Later Lula said that Brazil was willing to talk to Hamas, which is listed by the European Union and the US as a “terrorist” organisation.
Just in case it wasn’t clear whose side he favors, Lula laid a wreath on Yasser Arafat’s grave, but would not visit the tomb of Theodor Herzl, one of the founders of Zionism.
Lula’s after Ban Ki Moon’s job, and his idea of turning Brazil into a diplomatic superpower (since the country’s ages away from becoming an actual superpower) is to engage Iran,
“Brazil, under Lula, has been pressing very hard for a permanent seat on the Security Council of the United Nations, and if Brazil can intervene in some effective way in the Middle East crisis, this would clearly do Brazil’s chances no harm at all,” he said.
“Their unique selling point in the Middle East is their engagement with Iran … and I think they hope this policy of engagement will help to bring Iran in as part of the solution rather than part of the problem.”
So far, Lula’s efforts translate into engaging terrorists like Hamas and Iran against Israel – I am infected by the peace virus, says President Lula as he seeks UN job.