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Brazilian president calls Israeli attack on Gaza a massacre

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has described the ongoing Israeli offensive against the population of the Gaza Strip as a "massacre". The bombardment and invasion has so far killed 1,085 Palestinians, the majority of whom were civilians.

Rousseff was speaking during a forum organised by Folha de Sao Paulo newspaper. "What is happening in Gaza is dangerous," she said. "I do not think it is genocide, but I think it's a massacre."

Last week, the Brazilian foreign ministry condemned the "disproportionate" use of force by Israel and recalled its ambassador from Tel Aviv for consultations.

A spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry responded with now-customary Israeli arrogance. "This is an unfortunate demonstration of why Brazil, an economic and cultural giant, remains a diplomatic dwarf," said Yigal Palmor.

President Rousseff expressed her "regret" for the offensive term used by Israel to describe her country.

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