(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert this morning (Thursday, 14.02.08), met with Brazil Foreign Minister Celso Amorim, who emphasized the importance his country attributes to the existence of the diplomatic process between Israel and the Palestinians.  He underscored Brazil’s support for the process since the international meeting in Annapolis and added that the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians should be resolved through bilateral negotiations, with international support being essential to the process in the economic – and other – spheres.

Prime Minister Olmert praised Foreign Minister Amorim for his country’s active involvement in the peace process.  The Prime Minister also thanked him for his involvement in advancing Israel-Brazil relations and in the signing of the Israel-MERCOSUR Free Trade Agreement, which has opened new markets for Israel in South America.

Prime Minister Olmert briefed Foreign Minister Amorim on developments in the diplomatic process and said that Israel is interested in advancing the process in light of the window of opportunity which has been created and the international conditions that, in his estimate, make it possible to achieve an agreement based on the Roadmap.

The two men also discussed Iran’s attempts to acquire nuclear weapons; Prime Minister Olmert emphasized the need for continued economic sanctions to deter Iran from these attempts.