Brazil’s Bolsonaro mulling son for US ambassador
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Brazil’s Bolsonaro mulling son for US ambassador

Bolsonaro said on Friday that he was considering his 35-year-old son, Eduardo, for the post despite his lack of diplomatic experience. Eduardo "is friends with [US President] Donald Trump's sons, speaks English, speaks Spanish, and has a lot of life experience in the world," Bolsonaro said. "In my understanding, he could be an adequate person and would take perfect care of our message in Washington." Eduardo, who is currently serving as a congressman and advises his father on foreign affairs, told reporters he would accept the job if it were offered. His appointment would need to be approved by the Foreign Relations Committee in the Brazilian Senate before passing to the full upper house for confirmation. Bolsonaro said his son’s nomination for the post would not constitute an act of nepotism and that he would not make the appointment if that was the case. “That’s for the supreme court to decide. It is not nepotism, I would never do that,” Bolsonaro said on a live social media broadcast on Friday. Eduardo has also formed ties with Trump's former strategist Steve Bannon and joined his global right-wing group called The Movement. Moreover, Eduardo is an ardent defender of the US National Rifle Association (NRA) -- a firm supporter of Trump -- and the right to carry arms in Brazil. The appointment has been met with opposition from political figures as well as ordinary people in Latin America's largest economy. “Most of my colleagues are perplexed and in shock,” said a source at Brazil’s foreign ministry, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Not less because it’s a case of nepotism … But also because he does not have the qualifications for the job.” The widespread public anger over a series of huge corruption scandals that blighted the governments of Bolsonaro’s predecessors – Dilma Rousseff and Michel Temer – was a major factor that contributed to his election victory last October. Bolsonaro, whose rule is widely associated with far-right populism, is an ardent admirer of Trump and the White House’s policies, particularly those with regard to opposing left-wing governments in Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela. The 63-year-old former Army captain, who is also known as “Tropical Trump,” has sparked controversy by following Trump on relocating his country’s embassy in Israel to the occupied Jerusalem al-Quds. Bolsonaro personally made the promise to Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu while he attended the Brazilian president's inauguration ceremony on January 1. Bolsonaro has also said that he is open to considering the establishment of a US military base in Brazil as a way to “counter Russian influence” in neighboring Venezuela. The move was later rejected by Brazilian Defense Minister General Fernando Azevedo e Silva.

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