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ARGENTINA | 13-04-2024 21:56

President Milei cuts short international trip over Middle East crisis

President Javier Milei is ending his international trip early to handle his country's response to the crisis in the Middle East.

President Javier Milei is ending his international trip early to handle his country's response to the crisis in the Middle East, his spokesperson said Saturday, after Iran launched a wave of drones and missiles at Israel.

"The President is returning to Argentina to form a Crisis Committee due to the latest events in Israel, to take charge of the situation and coordinate actions with the presidents of the Western world," Presidential Spokesman Manuel Adorni said on X, formerly Twitter.

Iran launched more than 100 drones towards Israel on Saturday, an Israeli military official said, warning that more "waves of drones" would likely come from the Islamic Republic.

The government on Saturday expressed its "solidarity and unwavering commitment" to Israel in the face of the Iranian attack.

"The Office of President Javier Milei expresses its solidarity and unwavering commitment to the State of Israel in the face of the attacks launched by the Islamic Republic of Iran," the press release said.

"The Argentine Republic recognises the right of nation-states to defend themselves, and emphatically supports the State of Israel in the defence of its sovereignty, especially against regimes that promote terror and seek the destruction of Western civilisation," it added.

Milei was scheduled to travel from the United States on Saturday to Copenhagen to participate in the official ceremony marking an agreement for Argentina to buy two dozen F-16 fighter jets from Denmark.

The President reportedly took the decision with his sister, presidential chief-of-staff Karina Milei, after analysing the situation. Infobae reported that he has requested calls with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to express his support.

Upon his return to Buenos Aires, Milei will prepare a series of emergency measures to prevent possible terrorist attacks, government sources told local outlets.

While in the United States, Milei met with tech billionaire Elon Musk and received an award from the Chabad Jewish group. He also announced his break up with his girlfriend, actress and comedian Fátima Flórez.

The libertarian leader has shifted Argentina's foreign policy since taking office. Milei's latest decision is part of his geopolitical alignment with the United States and Israel, a chance he has outlined on multiple occasions.

In an interview earlier this week, Milei – who grew up Catholic but has a professed "fanaticism" for Judaism – said "he important thing is to ally with Israel."

He has promised to move Argentina's Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem as a show of support for the Jewish state.
 

 

– TIMES/AFP

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