While the US and UK stand by Israel over its military offensive in Gaza, governments across Latin America have moved to cut their links.
In a series of coordinated diplomatic and financial measures, Latin America is making a stand, heavily criticising Israel and cutting ties with the Jewish state, writes Channel 4 News reporter Guillermo Galdos.
El Salvador, Chile, Peru, Brazil and Ecuador have all recalled their ambassadors, while Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Uruguay and Paraguay have suspended the Free Trade Agreement talks, demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.
In a joint statement they called for an end to the “disproportionate use of force by the Israeli army in the Gaza Strip which in the majority affects civilians, including children and women.”
Chile – with the largest Palestinian Arab population outside of the Middle East – was the first to cut ties. It is no small gesture, as the country has deep economic and military connections with Israel.
And Bolivian President Evo Morales (pictured, above right) followed with a feisty speech on Wednesday – accusing Israel of being a “terrorist state” and has said that from now on Israelis would need a visa to visit his country.
Israel doesn’t guarantee the principle of respect for live, and the basic right to live in harmony and peace.Evo Morales, Bolivian president
“Israel doesn’t guarantee the principle of respect for life, and the basic right to live in harmony and peace in the international community,” he said.
Israel’s foreign ministry said it was disappointed with the recalling of ambassadors – and that such actions only encourage Hamas “a group recognised as a terror organisation by many countries around the world”.