Brazilian presidential advisor calls Israeli attacks "state terrorism"
A senior advisor to the Brazilian president on Tuesday called the Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip "state terrorism", Xinhua reported.
Marco Aurelio Garcia, foreign policy advisor to President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, said the attacks showed disrespect for the UN resolutions on the Palestine issue.
In an interview with local economic daily Valor, Garcia said his criticism of the Israeli government's actions should not be seen as opposition to Israel, a country which Lula plans to visit later this year.
Garcia stressed that he does not intend to defend either side in the conflict, but try to find an acceptable alternative in order to make peace in the area.
He also said the Brazilian government has been emphatic in condemning anti-Zionism and terrorist actions against Israel.
Celso Amorim, Brazil's foreign minister, criticized the "disproportional" use of strength in the Israeli offensive and regretted the loss of human lives.
The foreign minister requested an immediate cease-fire and suggested sending an observers mission to the area in a phone conversation with his Israeli counterpart Tzipi Livni.
Lula criticized the Israeli attacks last week, saying the United Nations does not have the necessary courage to make peace in the Middle East. He blamed the United States, Israel's ally, for the UN's inaction.
More than 500 Palestinians have been killed and 2,500 others injured since Israel launched air strikes on Gaza on Dec. 27 to retaliate for the firing of rockets into southern Israel by Hamas militants.