Brazil president condemns military response to world conflicts

The Brazilian leader said military force serves only to intensify the conflicts, not eliminate the causes.

Brazil president condemns military response to world conflicts

World Bulletin / News Desk

Brazil's president criticized attempts to solve armed conflicts through the use of military intervention, during the opening speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday.

"With each military intervention, we head not in the direction of peace, but instead watch those conflicts intensify," President Dilma Rousseff said as she opened the 69th General Assembly in New York. Such tactics serve only to "increase tragically the number of civilian victims and humanitarian dramas," she added.

"The use of force cannot eliminate the deep-rooted causes of the conflicts," she warned, as had been evidenced by the "ongoing issue of Palestine, the systematic massacre of the Syrian people, the national destruction of Iraq," as well as events in Libya, Israel and Ukraine.

Rousseff cautioned nations about their response to actions taken by terrorists in the Middle East region in recent weeks. "We cannot allow these acts of barbarity to keep harming our ethical, moral and civilizatory values," while adding that she "hugely regretted" the casualties that resulted from the military intervention waged by the U.S. and its regional allies against targets of the ISIL within Syria, but stopped short of directly condemning U.S. engagement in the region.

She also alluded to Brazil's years-long request to join the U.N. Security Council as a permanent member, saying that "paralysis and inaction" by the organization could lead to "great risks" and that the Council was in need of "true reform."

With Brazilians headed to the polls Oct. 5 for presidential and general elections, Rousseff opted to dedicate about half of her 24-minute speech, her fourth to the General Assembly as president, to domestic affairs.

She defended her government's record on tackling corruption and praised major social advances made in the 12 years her Workers' Party has ruled the country.

Rousseff also defended her government's economic policy, which has "continued to distribute income, stimulate growth and jobs, and upholding investments in infrastructure," she said.

Her remarks come after the government was forced to revise down its economic growth forecast for the year from 1.8 percent to 0.9 percent, although market analysts currently predict an expansion of 0.3 percent.

The leader of Brazil has traditionally given the first speech at the annual General Assembly meeting since 1947, due to the participation of Brazil's then-chief diplomat, Oswaldo Aranha, in the foundation of the organization. Aranha also played a leading role in the creation of the state of Israel.

There are 193 member states represented at the 2014 U.N. General Assembly.

Rousseff opened the assembly last year with a bruising rebuke of U.S. surveillance programs after documents leaked by former U.S. intelligence operative Edward Snowden reportedly showed that the U.S. had spied on Rousseff, state-run oil giant Petrobras and the communications of millions of ordinary Brazilians.

Last Mod: 25 Eylül 2014, 09:30
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