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Brazil's President Dilma Vana Rousseff addresses the 67th United Nations General Assembly at the U.N. headquarters in New York September 25, 2012.SHANNON STAPLETON/Reuters

Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff harshly criticized the economic policies of rich nations at the United Nations on Tuesday, saying they were failing to end the global crisis and harming emerging markets such as hers.

Ms. Rousseff told the UN General Assembly that orthodox fiscal policy "has been worsening the recession in the developed economies, with repercussions for the emerging countries."

Ms. Rousseff said that expansionist monetary policy practiced by the United States and Europe had caused "imbalances" in exchange rates of developing nations such as her own. That makes Brazil's exports less competitive, she said, forcing it to take other measures to protect its industries.

"We cannot accept that legitimate trade defense initiatives by developing countries be unfairly classified as protectionism," Ms. Rousseff said.

Brazil and the United States publicly sparred last week over Ms. Rousseff's recent decision to raise tariffs on about 100 foreign goods. The tariff increases were within the rules of the World Trade Organization, but fueled concerns over growing protectionism among emerging markets.