By Nelson Belen, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Often referred to as the “Tropical Trump”, Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro confirmed this weekend that he will finally meet the man he is most often compared to, U.S. President Donald Trump, at the White House on March 19th.
“It will be a great opportunity to reestablish the strong ties between our nations in the quest for a Western Hemisphere with freedom and prosperity,” exclaimed President Bolsonaro on twitter on Saturday, March 9th. “We have so much to accomplish!”
The White House also released a statement saying that the much anticipated meeting between Bolsonaro and Trump will focus on “how to build a more prosperous, secure, and democratic Western Hemisphere.”
The statement added that “[t]he leaders of the Hemisphere’s two largest economies will also discuss opportunities for defense cooperation, pro-growth trade policies, combatting transnational crime, and restoring democracy in Venezuela.”
Brazil and the U.S., along with more than fifty nations have supported Venezuela’s self-declared interim president, Juan Guaidó, as that country’s legitimate leader.
Just last week, Bolsonaro hosted Guaidó in Brasilia as the Venezuelan legislator searches for support for his transitional government as the impasse between he and Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro remains.
According to the White House, Bolsonaro and Trump will discuss the “major role that the United States and Brazil are playing in the effort to provide humanitarian assistance to Venezuela.”
In advance of the March 19th meeting between the two leaders, Brazil Foreign Minister Ernesto Araújo and Deputy Eduardo Bolsonaro have already arrived in the U.S. to prepare for President Bolsonaro’s visit.
It will be a busy back half of the month for the Brazilian president. Following his visit to the U.S., President Bolsonaro will travel to Chile to meet Sebastián Piñera and then to Israel to meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.