Jair Bolsonaro reaffirmed his campaign promise to move the embassy of his country in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, on the path inaugurated by the United States.
"As we stated during the campaign, we intend to transfer the Brazilian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Israel is a sovereign state and we respect it, "tweeted the far-right Bolsonaro, who will take office on January 1.
At a press conference at his residence in Rio de Janeiro, Bolsonaro said: "We respect the people of Israel and the Arab people. We do not want to create problems with anyone. We want to trade with the whole world, look for peaceful ways to solve problems. "
Questioned on the subject in an interview published Thursday by the Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom, Bolsonaro replied: "When they asked me, during the campaign, if I would do it when I was president, I would answer 'Yes, it is you who decides what the capital is of Israel, not the other nations. '"
The Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, celebrated the announcement made by the president-elect of Brazil. "I congratulate my friend, the incoming Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, for his intention to move the embassy to Jerusalem. It is a historic, correct and exciting step, "Netanyahu said in a message broadcast by his spokesman.
According to Brazilian media, the materialization of that promise could provoke commercial reprisals from Arab countries, which are important markets for Brazilian meats. If confirmed, the decision would be a break with respect to the diplomatic tradition maintained for years by Brazil in the conflict between Israel and Palestine. The Hebrew State considers the entire city of Jerusalem as its capital, while the Palestinians aspire for East Jerusalem to become the capital of their future State.
For the international community, the status of the Holy City has to be negotiated between the two parties, and the embassies do not have to settle there until an agreement has been reached.
The president of the United States, Donald Trump, broke in December 2017 with decades of diplomacy when he recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Since then, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has ended all relations with the Trump administration.
Israel occupies since 1967 militarily the West Bank, Palestinian territory, like East Jerusalem, the Palestinian part of the Holy City, which was annexed. This annexation has not been recognized by the international community.