Delegate Name: Jameson Gerrits
Since the fall of the Soviet Union, Russia has been an important economic and business partner for Brazil, most importantly supplying fertilizers to feed Brazil’s massive agricultural sector. Furthermore, the current Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, has repeatedly idolized Putin as almost a model for his presidency as a far-right populist, and described their relationship as similar to a “perfect marriage” due to their shared values. However, the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine has cast ties with Russia into doubt, as well as increasing prices of many basic commodities in Brazil. These issues have forced Brazilian foreign policy into a middle ground, with an impartial position motivated by finding a peaceful solution to the conflict. To this end, the Brazilian delegation to the General Assembly has voted in favor of the resolution condemning Russia but has additionally made clear that Brazil is not in favor of sanctions, despite the ire from some observers. This position comes at least formally from the sanctions’ incompatibility with a diplomatic solution and their breadth of consequence, but the trade between the countries is significant as well. Jair Bolsonaro has made his position somewhat more extreme, however. The president brought up the nationality of the residents of the area of Ukraine currently occupied by Russia and cast doubt on the claims of potential massacres at the beginning of the war, despite reiterating the previously stated neutral position of his foreign ministry. Of course, Bolsonaro has recently lost the Brazilian presidential election to rival and former president Lula de Silva, who takes office on the first of January. Lula, who also has been historically friendly to Russia, has also cited a neutral position on the conflict, describing Putin and Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky as equally responsible for the war, and calling out western leaders for not doing more to prevent it. Brazil wishes continue its neutral and peace-focused stance on the conflict. Brazil opposes further unrestricted sanctions and is especially against military action, but is committed to peace talks, an immediate ceasefire, and a lasting solution to the conflict. The Security Council has a responsibility to put pressure on both sides in order to halt the loss of lives and pursue a lasting peaceful solution to the region.