Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad plans to pay an official visit to Brazil in the near future, official sources said.
This will be President Ahmadinejad’s first official visit to Brazil since his counterpart Dilma Rousseff took office in January 2011, replacing Luiz Inacio Lula Da Silva.
Iran and Brazil developed strong links during the Lula’s presidency, who in 2010 helped with the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to reach an agreement for the exchange of nuclear fuel between Tehran and the West which was later denied by the US and its western allies.
Michael Slackman– New York Times, 05/17/2010
CAIRO — Iran announced an agreement on Monday to ship some of its nuclear fuel to Turkey in a deal that could offer a short-term solution to its ongoing nuclear standoff with the West, or prove to be a tactic aimed at derailing efforts to bring new sanctions against Tehran. The deal, negotiated by Turkey and Brazil, calls for Iran to ship 1,200 kilograms (2,640 pounds) of low enriched uranium to Turkey, where it would be stored. In exchange, after one year, Iran would have the right to receive about 265 pounds of material enriched to 20 percent from Russia and France.
The terms mirror a deal with the West last October that fell apart when Iran backtracked. But it is far from clear that the Obama administration will agree to it now — in part because Iran has continued to enrich uranium, adding to its stockpiles. In October, the 2,640 pounds that Iran was supposed to ship out of the country represented about two-thirds of its stockpile of nuclear fuel — enough to ensure that it would not retain sufficient nuclear material to make a weapon.
But now, the same amount of fuel accounts for a smaller proportion of its declared stockpile.
According to a Western diplomat who spoke in return for anonymity because he was not authorized to brief reporters, the amount of low-enriched uranium that Iran was prepared to ship to Turkey was believed to represent a little more than half its current stockpile.
Washington Post editorial, 05/15/2010
LAST SUNDAY, Iran hanged five Kurdish dissidents, including a 28-year-old woman, who said they had been tortured into confessing to charges of terrorism. On Monday it announced that the Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, who covered last year’s fraudulent presidential election for Newsweek, had been sentenced in absentia to 74 lashes and 13 years in prison. This is probably just the beginning of a brutal wave of repression aimed at preventing the opposition Green Movement from rallying as next month’s anniversary of the election approaches.
But on Saturday, Brazilian President Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva will arrive in Tehran in yet another effort to “engage” the extremist clique of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Mr. Lula and Turkish President Abdullah Gul claim to be making a last effort to broker a deal with the regime that will avert another round of U.N. sanctions over its nuclear program. No one outside their own governments thinks they will succeed. And will Mr. Lula even bother to mention the blood spilled by his hosts this week? Don’t hold your breath.
John Lyons-The Wall Street Journal, 11/20/09
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s coming trip to Brazil is spurring criticism of the country in Washington, souring a budding U.S.-Brazilian relationship that appeared to promise a period of unprecedented cooperation in Latin America.
Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s planned reception of Mr. Ahmadinejad on Monday undercuts U.S. and European efforts to pressure Iran to curtail its nuclear program, boosting his stature at a critical moment in the talks, experts say.
Mr. Ahmadinejad’s denial of the Holocaust, calls for Israel’s destruction and repression of post-electoral protests have isolated him from the world’s major economies — with Brazil as a big exception.
“Giving Ahmadinejad credibility by welcoming him is a terrible mistake,” said Congressman Eliot Engel (D., N.Y.), a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee who follows Brazil closely. “It makes you wonder if Brazil is really ready for the new era of global relations it envisions.”
Andre Soliani and Iuri Dantas-Bloomberg, 11/19/09
Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva’s goals of expanding his nation’s global influence and strengthening commercial ties with Iran may collide as he hosts President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Brasilia next week.
Lula wants to show Brazil can play a larger international role as it pursues a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council. The talks will center on a plan to increase financing for Brazilian exports to Iran, which more than doubled to $1.13 billion since 2002. Iran is also considering building steel plants in Brazil to tap the country’s iron ore reserves.
By welcoming a leader whose re-election was marred by complaints of fraud and whose country is under international sanction because of its nuclear program, Lula is undermining his push to be seen as the leader of the developing world, said U.S. Representative Eliot Engel.