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Ukraine's Zelensky attending Milei's inauguration

Friday, December 8th 2023 - 08:38 UTC
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Zelensky thanked Milei for his “clear support for Ukraine” Zelensky thanked Milei for his “clear support for Ukraine”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky Thursday announced he would be attending Javier Milei's inauguration in Buenos Aires on Dec. 10. His presence will add notoriety to a ceremony to be skipped by Brazil's President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva among other world leaders politically not aligned with the future head of state.

 Milei has repeatedly supported Kyiv's stance against Vladimir Putin's Russia. Argentina's future Foreign Minister Diana Mondino also said Argentina would not be joining the BRICS alliance made up of Brazil and Russia, in addition to India, China, and South Africa, which is to be enlarged on Jan 1. when new countries become full members. Argentina had been invited to adhere under President Alberto Fernández but a political shift has the South American nation targetting other partners and markets instead.

“I just spoke with the president-elect of Argentina @JMilei to thank him for his clear stance. No counterweights between right and wrong. Just clear support for Ukraine. This is noticed and appreciated by Ukrainians,” Zelensky posted on X.

On the other hand, it was also reported in Buenos Aires that El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele had changed his mind and will not be in Buenos Aires for the ceremony and will send Justice and Public Security Minister Gustavo Villatoro instead. Bukele took a leave of absence to get fully into his reelection campaign, it was explained.

In addition, Milei has not sent invitations to the presidents of Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua out of political discrepancies. Milei argues Ebrahim Raisi, Nicolás Maduro, Miguel Díaz-Canel, and Daniel Ortega violate human rights and support international terrorism. Nevertheless, Milei chose a more diplomatic approach with China, Russia, and Brazil despite his campaign remarks about the heads of state of those countries.

Brazil will be represented by Foreign Minister Vieira because Milei has not apologized to Lula. Last-minute efforts by Mondino failed to undo the badmouthing the Libertarian leader made during his campaign. Milei labeled Lula a “communist” and a “corrupt” and insisted he would break ties with Communists Brazil and China. In this scenario, former foreign minister and current presidential advisor on international affairs Celso Amorim said Lula felt “personally offended” and an apology was due, which Milei's invitation did not include. In addition, Milei invited Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and his son Eduardo, which was not interpreted as a good sign by the Lula administration.

So far and according to Buenos Aires media, Presidents Luis Lacalle Pou (Uruguay), Santiago Peña (Paraguay), Daniel Noboa (Ecuador), Vahagn Khachaturian (Armenia), and Gabriel Boric Font (Chile) have confirmed their presence, in addition to King Felipe VI of Spain and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. The United Kingdom will be represented by the Minister in charge of the Americas, Caribbean, and Overseas Territories, David Rutley, and Israel will send its Foreign Minister, Eli Cohen.

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