Brazil Allows Iranian Warships Entry
The Brazilian government has permitted a flotilla of Iranian naval ships to berth in Rio de Janeiro in defiance of pressures from the US.
The Iranian Navy’s Makran and Dena warships, which together form the Islamic Republic’s 86th flotilla of military vessels, berthed in Rio on Sunday, the port authority was quoted by Reuters as saying in a statement.
Vice Admiral Carlos Eduardo Horta Arentz, the deputy chief of Brazil’s Naval Staff, approved the Iranian ships to dock in Rio between February 26 and March 4, following Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula’s recent visit to Washington.
On January 28, Rear Admiral Hamzeh Ali Kaviani, the Iranian Navy’s second-in-command, had said that the vessels were sailing along Latin America’s western shores and were to drop anchor in Rio within a few days, Press TV reported.
According to Western media outlets, Brazil had initially delayed docking of the ships as the country’s president was flying to Washington to meet with US President Joe Biden.
Earlier in February, US Ambassador to Brasilia, Elizabeth Bagley urged Brazil not to allow the ships to dock, saying, “We firmly believe those ships should not dock anywhere.”
However, despite Washington’s calls, the South American country allowed the ships to dock in Rio after Lula ended his trip.