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Supporters of Javier Milei in Buenos Aires (October 18)

Photo: Matias Baglietto / REUTERS

Former US President Donald Trump has congratulated populist Javier Milei on his victory in the presidential election in Argentina. "The whole world was watching! I am very proud of you. You're going to turn your country upside down and really make Argentina great again!" Trump wrote on Monday night on the social network Truth Social, which he co-founded. Trump was alluding to his own campaign slogan, "Make America Great Again."

A rather sober message came from the White House. "We look forward to building on our strong relationship based on our shared values of human rights, democratic principles and transparency," said National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva congratulated the newly elected Argentine government without mentioning Milei. "I wish the new government luck and success. Argentina is a big country that deserves our respect. Brazil will always be ready to collaborate with our Argentine brothers," Lula wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

Before the election, however, Milei had expressed doubts about the future relationship between Argentina and Brazil, calling Lula a "socialist with totalitarian ideas." He also criticized the South American common market Mercosur, saying Argentina would "go its own way." Despite its severe economic crisis, Argentina remains the most important sales market for Brazilian industrial products.

Chilean President Gabriel Boric congratulated the new Argentine president on X: "I congratulate Javier Milei on his victory." Colombian President Gustavo Petro, on the other hand, is concerned about the election victory of the polarizing politician. "In Argentina, the extreme right has won, that's the decision of society. Sadly for Latin America, neoliberalism no longer has a proposal for society, it cannot respond to the current problems of humanity," he wrote on the short message service after the election.

Milei, on the other hand, received support from Europe. "Congratulations, dear Milei, on your great victory in the Argentine presidential elections," wrote Santiago Abascal, leader of Spain's right-wing populist party Vox, on X. "Long live Spain, long live Argentina, sovereign and free of socialism."