Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro said Tuesday in front of the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum that Nazism was a product of a left-wing movement.
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Bolsonaro, who is on an official visit to Israel since Sunday, made the comments after visiting the museum built in memory of six million Jews massacred by Nazis.
Upon leaving the museum he said that "there is no doubt" that Nazism was a leftist movement. This statement is not shared by the Israeli museum’s own research center. The Jerusalem Holocaust Remembrance Center explicitly states on its website that Nazism was part of the rise of right-wing radical groups in Germany.
During a press conference after his visit, he was asked if he agreed with his foreign minister, Ernesto Araujo, who recently repeated in his blog that "fascism and Nazism are left-wing phenomena," he said, "There is no doubt. Socialist Party. What else if not? It was the National Socialist Party of Germany."
Bolsonaro has previously attacked communism and his leftist opposition party Worker’s Party (PT), vowing to get rid of all leftists.
During this trip, the Brazilian president deepened his alliance with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is facing elections on April 9, by announcing the opening of an office with diplomatic status for the representation of business, technology, research and innovation in Jerusalem and not an embassy as the president had promised throughout his 2018 campaign.
The Palestinian Ambassador in Brasilia Ibrahim Alzeban said Palestinians are upset Bolsonaro did not consider a visit to the Palestinian territories and did not coordinate his trip with authorities there.
Bolsonaro will visit Brazilians living in Israel Wednesday before concluding his trip.