Israel, Brazil sign agreements
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Israel, Brazil sign agreements

RIO DE JANEIRO (JTA) — Israel and Brazil signed cooperation agreements on extradition, tourism and security.

The deals were signed Wednesday during Israeli President Shimon Peres’ visit to Brazil this week.

Israel has signed a $350 million deal to supply dozens of unmanned surveillance aircraft to Brazil’s national police, a defense official said Thursday. The Heron drones, made by Israel Aerospace Industries, are to be used to monitor Brazil’s borders and help prevent the smuggling of arms, drugs and unspecified natural resources. They will also be used to augment security during the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. Brazilian police are currently being trained to use the system.

The extradition agreement is part of a cooperation on the war on international crime. It was the result of negotiations between Israel’s state prosecutor’s office and representatives of the Brazilian authorities. This collaboration led to the recent extradition of religious sect spiritual leader Elior Chen to Israel.

The tourism agreement is intended to grow tourism traffic between the two countries.

"We see great importance in strengthening ties with the South American countries, both in order to encourage tourism to Israel and to promote cooperation in various areas," said Israel’s tourism minister Stas Misezhnikov.

"We hope that both Brazilians and Israelis are able to know the beauties and the attractions that our countries offer," added Luiz Barreto, Brazil’s tourism minister.