President-elect Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil–often referred to as “Trump of the Tropics”–is rewriting his nation’s Israel policy.
After sweeping to victory with 55% of the vote, Bolsonaro now plans to move the Brazilian embassy to Israeli from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
“As previously stated during our campaign, we intend to transfer the Brazilian Embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem. Israel is a sovereign state and we shall duly respect that,” Bolsonaro said, via Twitter.
In 2016, the Trump Administration took a huge step on Israel, being the first nation to move an embassy to Jerusalem–the city that Israel claims as its capital, but is disputed by the Palestinian authority. The move had been approved by bipartisan majorities in Congress numerous times, but had been delayed by each successive administration.
It’s clear that Trump’s willingness to go to the mat for Israel is slowly inspiring U.S. allies to follow suit: Guatemala also announced they would move their embassy.
Israel’s government also took to Twitter to praise Bolsonaro’s big move.
“I congratulate my friend Brazilian president-elect, Jair Bolsonaro, for his intention to move the Brazilian Embassy to Jerusalem, a historic, correct and exciting step,” tweeted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.