Brazil President under fire as Amazon burns

By Doug Mattushek - 23 August 2019Views : 557

As the Amazon continues to burn, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is fighting a different battle.

The BBC reports that the National Institute for Space Research has shown there has been an increase of 85% in fires across Brazil in 2019. While some are natural, other fires are believed to have been started by agricultural, mining and logging industries to take advantage of the forests natural resources.

As such, global leaders are expressing their concern.

"Our house is burning. Literally," tweeted French President Emmanuel Macron.

"The Amazon rain forest - the lungs which produces 20% of our planet's oxygen - is on fire. It is an international crisis. Members of the G7 Summit, let's discuss this emergency first order in two days!"

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for the protection of the Amazon.

"In the midst of the global climate crisis, we cannot afford more damage to a major source of oxygen and biodiversity. The Amazon must be protected," he said.

Meanwhile, Bolsonaro is annoyed at the meddling of other nations.

"These countries that send money here, they don't send it out of charity...they send it with the aim of interfering with our sovereignty," Reuters reports the Brzilian president as saying.

"The Amazon is bigger than Europe, how will you fight criminal fires in such an area? We do not have the resources for that.

"The French president's suggestion that Amazonian issues be discussed at the G7 without the participation of the countries of the region evokes a misplaced colonialist mindset, which does not belong in the 21st Century."