Brazil Ratifies Free Trade Agreement with Palestinian Authority

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Brazil’s Foreign Ministry stated, “The agreement is a concrete contribution to an economically viable Palestinian state, which can live peacefully and harmoniously with its neighbors.”

President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva announced the ratification during his speech at the 64th Mercosur summit in Paraguay on Monday. He expressed regret that the agreement coincides with what he described as “a completely irrational war” affecting the Palestinian people.

“We are proud to be the first country in the bloc to ratify the free trade agreement with Palestine. But I cannot help but regret that this occurs in a context in which the Palestinian people are suffering as a result of a completely irrational war,” President Lula emphasized.

Brazil, which recognized a Palestinian state in 2010 and hosts a Palestinian embassy in its capital, ratified the agreement on Friday, following its signing by the Mercosur trade bloc in 2011.

It remains unclear if other Mercosur members, including Argentina under President Javier Milei’s right-wing government, will follow suit.

Palestinian ambassador in Brasilia, Ibrahim Al Zeben, praised Brazil’s decision as “courageous, supportive, and timely.”

He stated, “It is the effective way to support peace in Palestine,” adding that he hopes Palestine’s trade with Mercosur, currently at $32 million a year, will grow.