Israel’s Prime Minister met the presidents of Argentina and Paraguay in Buenos Aires yesterday.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took the opportunity to stress that Israel “look[s] forward to cooperating with Argentina, in specific ways that will change the world of our citizens, their lives for the better”. Netanyahu also emphasized Israel’s and Argentina’s similarities as democracies with a commitment to innovation and cooperation “in the fields of agriculture, of water, of IT, of cyber security [and] in the fields of health”.
Netanyahu also said that the Argentine Jewish community “has undergone two traumatic experiences in the bombings that took place in Buenos Aires in the Israeli embassy and then the [Argentine Israelite Mutual Association] centre and it emerged stronger than before”. The 1994 bombing of the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association, which killed 84 people, is the worst terror attack in Argentina’s history. The 1992 attack on the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires killed 29 people, including four Israeli citizens.
In return, Argentine President Mauricio Macri said he was honoured to host the first visit of a sitting Israeli Prime Minister to South America.
Netanyahu also met Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes, who flew to Buenos Aires especially for the meeting, with the Prime Minister stressing the “potential in the cooperation that we have for the betterment of both our peoples”.
Netanyahu took the opportunity to clarify Israel’s position on the nuclear deal with Iran, saying: “Our position is straightforward – this is a bad deal. Either fix it or cancel it. This is Israel’s position.”
“They have a terror machine that encompasses the entire world, with their sidekick Hezbollah,” he continued.
Netanyahu is due to fly to Columbia and Mexico on the next phase of his first visit to South America.