Amid Growing Iranian Influence in Latin America, Ahmadinejad Travels to Brazil

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is scheduled to arrive in Brazil on November 23 for a three-day visit in an effort to further strengthen relations between the two countries and expand Iran’s influence in the region. [1]


During Ahmadinejad’s trip, the two countries are expected to discuss implementing a travel visa waiver agreement, Iranian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alireza Salari said in an interview with Agência Brasil on Oct. 23. [2] If an agreement is signed, Iranians will be allowed to enter and exit Brazil without visas.

Iranians previously entered the region through Nicaragua without visas and Venezuela maintains a direct flight from Tehran to Caracas, via Syria. [3]

Brazil, the largest country in Latin America, ranks among Iran’s top regional allies that include anti-Western nations such as Venezuela and Bolivia. [4] From 2002 – 2007, the volume of Iran-Brazil trade quadrupled to $2 billion. [5] Most of Iran’s exports to Brazil consist of petrochemical and oil products. [6]

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has maintained a close relationship to Iran and, unlike many international leaders, openly supports Iran’s self-declared right to nuclear energy. [7] Da Silva also was among the first leaders to congratulate Ahmadinejad following Iran’s controversial June 12 elections. [8]

Iran’s Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki acknowledges that “the political stands adopted by Teh… >>>

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