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Brazilian president puts off visit to US in wake of facts of electronic espionage

September 17, 2013, 23:40 UTC+3

Barack Obama and Dilma Rousseff agreed that it would make sense to put off the visit now

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BUENOS AIRES, September 17 (Itar-Tass) - President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil has put off a state visit to the U.S. that was initially scheduled for October 23, the press service of the presidential administration said in a press release Tuesday.

The visit was cancelled in the wake of surfacing of the data on electronic espionage carried out by U.S. intelligence services.

Barack Obama and Dilma Rousseff agreed that it would make sense to put off the visit now, or otherwise it might be affected by the question, to which Brazil has not received a satisfactory answer yet, the press service yet.

In all probability, this was a reference to the publications in the Brazilian press, which said on the basis of the information revealed by former CIA technology analyst Edward Snowden that the U.S. was bugging President Rousseff’s telephone conversations and was doing electronic espionage on the state oil company Petrobraz.

Electronic espionage was in the focal point of talks between Rousseff and Obama on the sidelines of the G20 summit in St Petersburg. Also, Brazilian MPs decided to send a delegation to Russia so as to get more information on the U.S. espionage in Brazil from Snowden, who was staying in Russia on the terms of asylum.

Last week, Brazilian Foreign Minister Luis Alberto Figueiredo met in Washington with U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice. Brazilian newspapers said, however, the U.S. Administration’s explanations regarding the fact of espionage did not seem convincing to the Brazilian side.

Barack Obama phoned Dilma Rousseff Monday and the new U.S. Ambassador to the country, Liliana Ayalde, who arrived in Brasilia on the same day, stressed the importance of consolidating the strategic partnership between the two nations.

However, she refrained from comments on the espionage story.

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