The Israeli Consul and Zionist Federation in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul, along with the Jewish Congress in Latin America, are continuing to put pressure on the organisers to cancel the World Social Forum – Free Palestine event, which is due to be held in the South American country.
According to Palestinian activists, pressure is being put on the state's parliament in particular not to give any space for any Palestinian activity or for the World Social Forum-Free Palestine programme. The activists have called on all supporters of the Palestinian cause to send statements of support for the forum and for demonstrations to be held in protest at the Israeli-Zionist pressure. The Legislative and executive bodies in Brazil are being asked not to bow to such unreasonable pressure.
According to activists, Brazilian parliamentarians generally stand alongside Palestine. The state governor in the capital Port Alegre has, it is claimed, given in to the Israeli demands. In order for the programme to go ahead, a simple majority of the state legislature committee members looking into the issue is needed. Demonstrators will be outside the legislature while the discussion and vote are taking place.
Sources close to the discussions have reported that the Israeli consul, the president of the Zionist Federation and representative of the Jewish Council for Latin America will meet with Raul Ponte, a Labour politician, to try to persuade him to back their stance. Ponte is known as a supporter of the Palestinian cause.