At the Luncheon Hosted by the President of the Republic of Brazil Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva
23 October 2008
In the Name of God, the Most Merciful, the Compassionate,
On behalf of Rania and myself, and the entire Jordanian delegation, allow me to thank you for giving us such a warm welcome. We are delighted to be here ... and grateful for the wonderful hospitality we have received from the Brazilian people.
This is my first visit to Brazil. But, Mr. President, I do not feel like a newcomer. For Jordan, Brazil is not a stranger. It is an admired friend. Brazilians have made their country's name known and respected everywhere in the world - in the circles of international diplomacy ... to the corridors of global business ... on the world's best-seller lists and in the media ... and through technology advances, from sea to space.
Happy as our meeting is, it comes at a time of serious global challenges. But despite these challenges, our countries can progress on the path forward ... by forging partnerships to build a better future.
I am proud to say that Jordan has been a consistent advocate for Middle East development and reform, including economic integration. And beyond the Middle East, we have worked to create a worldwide network of economic partners and friends of peace. We look to Brazil as a leader and model of progress.
Your country has set the global standard for multilateralism, regional cooperation, and the peaceful settlement of disputes. Brazil's multi-ethnic society offers lessons to the world about co-existence and progress. Immigrants from my region were first welcomed here more than a century ago. Today, the Brazilian Arab community is South America's largest and one of the world's most dynamic. This history sends a powerful message to my region about Brazil's positive national culture and goodwill.
For Jordan, tolerance and moderation are pillars of our society and future. I am proud that my country was the source of the decisive Amman Message, expressing Islam's true values to Muslims and non-Muslims worldwide. This work will continue as long as distortions and inter-faith divisions threaten our world. Mr. President, we hope to work with you to strengthen the bridges among peoples, worldwide.
Allow me to say a word of special thanks to you for your leadership in global affairs, especially in reaching out to the Middle East. Under your leadership, three years ago, Brazil hosted the first Arab-South American Summit. And we appreciate your support for cooperation between Jordan and MERCOSUR.
Brazil has been a long-time supporter of justice for Palestinians, and you have taken an active role ... both in responding to the humanitarian crisis ... and in supporting a two-state settlement. I do not need to tell anyone here, how vital this is, for the region - and the entire world. For progress, for stability, for moderation, there must be a comprehensive agreement ... an end to conflict, with security for Israelis, and justice for Palestinians - in an independent, viable, and sovereign Palestinian state.
We truly value Brazil's partnership and good will. I wish your people the greatest success. And I commit to you Jordan's enduring friendship, cooperation, and respect, and for us it would be a tremendous honour to host you, Mr. President, and your colleagues in Jordan in the near future.
Thank you again for the very warm hospitality extended to me and my delegation.