Sanctions on Russia ‘irresponsible’, adviser to Brazil’s Lula says — Analysis

Russia’s economy is too “big and strategic” to isolate, Celso Amorim told Bloomberg

Celso Amorim, Brazil’s former foreign minister and current foreign policy adviser to presidential frontrunner Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, has condemned the West’s sanctions on Russia and said that should Lula take office, Brazil would chart a different course.

In an interview with Bloomberg published on Friday, Amorim claimed that the West’s response to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine – sanctions on Russia and billions of dollars worth of weapons for Ukraine – have made nuclear war a real possibility.

“For the first time since the Cuban missile crisis we see articles about the risk of nuclear weapons published on a weekly basis,”He argued that “it’s irresponsible not to seek peace.”

Amorim’s argument mirrors that of Lula himself. The ex-Brazilian leader stated in May that he believes Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky is equally responsible in the conflict in Ukraine. Washington was also condemned for encouraging Zelensky to criticize Russia.

“The United States has a lot of political clout. Biden could not have done it. [the conflict], not incited it,”Lula also argued during that period.

Brazil's Lula names those responsible for Ukraine conflict

Amorim, speaking from the US’ perspective, questioned why Russia should be forced into deeper relations with China. China is a rival economically and militarily to America.

“I have nothing against China,”He said, adding that the two are members of the BRICS group but that he did not know if he “can’t understand the interest of the US in strengthening the China-Russia relationship.”

This relationship aside, Amorim told Bloomberg that an economy as large as Russia’s is “too big and strategic” to isolate, and that Lula’s administration would not pursue such policies if the two-term leftist president is elected in October. Lula spoke out to Time in May. “many different countries”Are required to “foot the bill” for Washington’s hardline anti-Russia policies, and that if he is elected, “Brazil will again become a protagonist on the international stage and we will prove that it’s possible to have a better world.”

An aggregate by the Americas Society in America shows that Lula currently has 11 points more support than incumbent President Jair Bosonaro. Should he triumph in October, Amorim will likely be influential in setting his administration’s foreign policy, having served as Brazil’s foreign minister during Lula’s two terms in office from 2003 until 2010. 

Bolsonaro has not followed the US’ lead on Ukraine either. Despite Brazil voting in the UN General Assembly to condemn Russia over the conflict, the president has refused to sanction Moscow and announced his intention to keep purchasing fertilizer from Russia and sign a new deal to import Russian diesel.

Bolsonaro was also part of the blame for Kiev’s conflict, just like Lula. He claimed that the conflict was caused by Ukrainians in February. “trusted a comedian with the fate of a nation,”Referring to Zelensky.


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