US Pressing for Cancellation of Brazilian President's Visit to Russia, Reports Say
06:23 GMT 01.02.2022 (Updated: 06:27 GMT 01.02.2022)
© AP Photo / Eraldo PeresBrazil's President Jair Bolsonaro attends a ceremony on the National Day of People with Disabilities, at the Planalto presidential palace, in Brasilia, Brazil, Monday, Sept. 27, 2021.
© AP Photo / Eraldo Peres
MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) - The United States is putting pressure on Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to call off his visit to Moscow in February saying it may be interpreted as taking sides amid tensions on the Russian-Ukrainian border, the Brazilian newspaper Folha de Sao Paulo reported, citing diplomatic sources.
"During a Sunday phone call with Brazilian Foreign Minister Carlos Franca, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed concerns again that the president's visit might be interpreted as a sign that Brazil takes a side in the conflict", sources in the Brazilian Foreign Ministry told the newspaper on Monday.
Washington does not explicitly request a change to the agenda of the talks but makes it clear that the US is working to have the trip cancelled or at least postponed, according to the report.
However, the Brazilian government is still reluctant to cancel the visit to Moscow, and the sides are expected to discuss a wide agenda of bilateral relations and partnerships within BRICS, which has nothing to do with the geopolitical situation in Eastern Europe, the diplomatic sources added.
The Biden administration reportedly held similar talks with Argentina concerning President Alberto Fernandez's visit to Russia later this week.
© AFP 2023 / YURIY DYACHYSHYN US and Ukrainian soldiers attend an opening ceremony of the joint Ukrainian-US military exercise 'Fearless Guardian' at the Yavoriv training ground
US and Ukrainian soldiers attend an opening ceremony of the joint Ukrainian-US military exercise 'Fearless Guardian' at the Yavoriv training ground
© AFP 2023 / YURIY DYACHYSHYN
On Tuesday, Bolsonaro said in an interview that he is not going to raise the issue of the Ukrainian crisis during the meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and added that the talks will revolve around, in particular, fertilisers.
Russia has rejected all the accusations of so-called "aggressive actions" near the borders of Ukraine, recently made by Kiev and several Western countries. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russia is moving troops within its own territory and at its own discretion. According to him, this does not threaten anyone and should not worry anyone. Russia also deems NATO deploying additional troops to the region as a pretext for a provocation and for Kiev's plans to sabotage the Minsk agreements.