Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said Monday that there would be no peace in the Middle East as long at the United States continued to serve as the main mediator in the region.
Meanwhile, former US President Jimmy Carter said Brazil could have a "crucial" role in advancing peace in the Middle East, the British Telegraph newspaper reported.
"I am very happy to see that Brazil recognized the Palestinian state with the 1967 borders," Carter said in an interview with the Brazilian newspaper Folha de S. Paulo.
"We cannot count on the United States alone to bring peace, since it agrees with almost everything that Israel does," he added. "Brazil can help because it has a lot of influence among developing countries. Brazil can be one of the leaders of this process."
The outgoing Brazilian president said during a military ceremony Monday that he was convinced there would not peace in the Middle East as long as the US was the "guardian of peace" in the region.
"It's important to develop other elements, other countries which could mediate," he Lula da Silva said.
He noted that the need to bring new players into the international diplomatic process was what motivated him to visit Tehran in May, in a bid to convince Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to
ship uranium for enrichment abroad. The US, however, vetoed the agreement.
The Brazilian leader reiterated his demand to expand the UN Security Council, which he said represented "the world order after World War II rather than the world order of the 21st century." Brazil, India, Japan and other countries seek to become permanent Council members.