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Brazil appoints new foreign minister
August 27, 2013, 8:38 am


Patriota resigned on Monday amid diplomatic tensions with Bolivia [AP]

Luiz Alberto Figueiredo, Brazil’s envoy to the UN, has been appointed as the new Brazilian foreign minister.

Figueiredo will take charge from Antonio Patriota who is set to become Brazil’s new ambassador to the UN.

Patriota resigned on Monday amid diplomatic tensions with Bolivia.

The resignation followed the announcement of Brazilian foreign ministry official Eduardo Saboia that he had aided an opponent of the Bolivian President Evo Morales in fleeing to Brazil.

“I chose life. I chose to protect someone, a persecuted politician, just as President Dilma [Rousseff] was persecuted,” Saboia told Brazil’s Globo TV.

President Dilma Rousseff had earlier on Monday met Patriota and accepted his resignation, says a statement from the President’s office.

The new foreign minister is expected to arrive in Brazil on Tuesday and will assume office on Wednesday.

Before his stint as UN envoy, Figueiredo served as Under Secretary for Environment, Energy, Science and Technology at Brazil’s Ministry of External Relations.

Armed with a law degree, he has headed Brazilian negotiating teams for many years in global summits on environmental concerns, especially climate change and biodiversity.

Figueiredo has been a strong backer of the Kyoto Protocol during climate talks, leading a search for common ground between developing and developed nations on contentious issues.

With inputs from Agencies