Skip To Content
Fast Forward

Netanyahu Could Cut Unprecedented Brazil Visit Over Politics At Home

RIO DE JANEIRO (JTA) — Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu may cut his five-day visit to Brazil short over the political developments in Israel.

Both Israeli and Brazilian media reported on the possibility of a shortened trip on Tuesday evening, more than a day after the ruling coalition agreed to dissolve the government and go to early elections.

Netanyahu’s visit centers on the inauguration of Jair Bolsonaro as Brazil’s new president on Jan. 1 in the country’s capital city, Brasilia. His presence at the ceremony is now uncertain due to the likely changes in the agenda, yet to be confirmed.

The historic visit – the first of a sitting Israeli prime minister to Brazil – is considered strategic because both leaders will discuss face to face the details of the transfer of the Brazilian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, one of Bolsonaro’s flagship promises during his campaign.

Netanyahu is scheduled to land in Rio on Friday, where he will be the first and only foreign leader to meet with Bolsonaro before he is sworn in next week. After the private bilateral meeting, Netanyahu will attend an afternoon service at a synagogue in Copacabana. He also is scheduled to meet Evangelical Christian leaders on Sunday, when he will fly to Brasilia or to Tel Aviv, depending on whether the visit is shortened.

“The visit will bring an important political message: a turnaround in Israel’s relations with the largest country in Latin America. We are turning Israel into a rising world power,” Netanyahu tweeted on Sunday.

The much-awaited trip marks the end of an era of strained ties between Brazil and the Jewish state.

A message from our editor-in-chief Jodi Rudoren

We're building on 127 years of independent journalism to help you develop deeper connections to what it means to be Jewish today.

With so much at stake for the Jewish people right now — war, rising antisemitism, a high-stakes U.S. presidential election — American Jews depend on the Forward's perspective, integrity and courage.

—  Jodi Rudoren, Editor-in-Chief 

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.