Netanyahu Visits South America

This week has seen Israel’s Prime Minister visit three Latin American countries.

On Tuesday in Argentina he was given nearly 140,000 secret files and photographs from 1939-1950 in digital format. The documents were given to him by President Mauricio Macri. They included letters, telegrams and reports digitized by Argentina and the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.

Israeli Prime Minister and Argentinian PresidentBenjamin Netanyahu and Mauricio Macri (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

President Macri said: “We have delivered these digitalized historical documents about the Holocaust so that the state of Israel can make sure that they are investigated.”

Benjamin Netanyahu said that his visit marks “a new dawn” in his country`s relationship with Latin America.

On Wednesday he went on to visit Colombia, where President Juan Manuel Santos thanked Israel, noting especially Jerusalem’s efforts to help defuse landmines. He said:

“Israel has been a friend and ally of Colombia and lately it has been a great ally in the construction of peace in our country. You have offered help to us in several areas, including, for example, something that is very humanitarian, which is the removal of anti-personnel mines.”

Then on Thursday, Benjamin Netanyahu went on to Mexico, where he was greeted by President Enrique Pena Nieto. Netanyahu noted that this week’s visit has been the first of an Israeli Prime Minister to Latin America, saying:

“I would say it’s an unpardonable lapse, but we want a pardon ... We think we correct now a historic lapse, because Mexico is a great country. It’s one of the world’s great economies. It’s great nation, a great people, a great culture. We want to be close, even closer, to Mexico. And this is what this meeting signifies.”