Brasilia, May 30 (IANS): Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva welcomed back his Venezuelan counterpart Nicolas Maduro for the first time in the country since the latter was banned in 2019 by former leader Jair Bolsonaro.
Describing Maduro's return to Brazil "a historic moment", Lula said in a tweet on Monday: "After 8 years, the President
Nicolas Maduro visits Brazil again and we regain the right to carry out international relations policy with the seriousness that we have always done, especially with the countries that border Brazil."
The Venezuelan leader arrived in the country ahead of a summit of Latin American leaders in Brasilia, reports the BBC.
On his part, Maduro talked of a "new era" in bilateral relations.
"Venezuela is prepared to resume virtuous relations with investors and businessmen from Brazil. We are with open doors, with full guarantees so that we return to the time of joint work and cooperation," he said on Twitter.
At a joint press conference, Lula also spoke of what he termed "extremely exaggerated" US sanctions on Venezuela and said it was inexplicable that Washington would "impose 900 sanctions because they don't get on".
He urged his South American ally to build a new "narrative" about authoritarianism, saying an unfair and "constructed" one had been established around the state of democracy in Venezuela.
Maduro had last visited Brazil in 2015.