NewsBrazil recalls ambassador amid escalating tensions with Israel over Holocaust comparison

Brazil recalls ambassador amid escalating tensions with Israel over Holocaust comparison

Brazil recalls ambassador amid escalating tensions with Israel over Holocaust comparison
Images source: © GETTY | Bloomberg
7:16 AM EST, February 20, 2024

Foreign Affairs Minister Mauro Vieira has asked the Brazilian ambassador in Tel Aviv, Frederico Meyer, to return to Brazil for consultations. Meyer is set to leave Israel on Tuesday. This measure comes after Israel, pronounced Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva unwelcome, due to his remarks connecting Israeli operations in Gaza to the Holocaust.

"We will neither forget nor forgive," said Katz while speaking at the Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem, Yad Vashem. "This is a severe anti-Semitic attack. On my behalf and on behalf of the citizens of Israel, convey this to President Lula. He is persona non grata in Israel until he takes his words back," he added.

The Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced plans to summon the Israeli ambassador in Brazil, Daniel Zonshine, for a meeting in Rio de Janeiro.

Disputed Remarks by Lula

Lula has labeled the October 7 attack by the Palestinian group Hamas on Israel as a "terrorist" act. However, he also criticized the Israeli retaliative attacks on Gaza.

While in Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa, for the African Union summit, Lula told reporters that "what is happening to the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip is unprecedented in history. The only comparable situation was when Hitler decided to exterminate the Jews."

"What is happening in the Gaza Strip is not a war, it's genocide. It's not a conflict of soldiers against soldiers. It is an assault by a highly trained army on women and children," he added.

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