President Jair Bolsonaro said Friday that Europe had "no lesson to give" in Brazil on the Amazon, while his Foreign Minister was pleased with the proximity of his country with the United States. The head of the Brazilian diplomacy, Ernesto Araujo, and Eduardo Bolsonaro, the deputy son of the president and possible future ambassador to Washington, indeed went to the White House, in search of support whereas Brazil is for a week under intense international pressure. The two men spoke for about thirty minutes with the American president.
Trump unreservedly supports Bolsonaro
"The governments are on the same wavelength," said Araujo, welcoming that "for the first time" the US president receives officials not having the rank of president or head of state. According to the Minister, "governments share the view that countries are sovereign in their territory" and that fires in the world's largest rainforest should not be "a pretext for promoting the idea of an international committee to manage the Amazon ".
The US president congratulated Jair Bolsonaro on Tuesday, saying he was "working very hard" in the fight against fires in the Amazon, taking a complete stand against other G7 members. He had expressed the "unqualified support" of the United States in Brazil.
On the ground, the fires continue to grow, despite a temporary ban on burns and the mobilization since the last weekend of 18 aircraft and 3,900 men in the Amazon. Some 2,300 new fires have been recorded in Brazil by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), including nearly 1,500 in the nine states of the Amazon. The total number of fires recorded in the country since January is over 87,000, the highest since 2010, when more than 132,000 fires were recorded over the same period. Despite these alarming figures, President Bolsonaro said Thursday evening Bolsonaro on Facebook that it "is not true" that the Amazon rainforest is "on fire", while ensuring that "the fires this year are lower than the average of recent years ".
The far-right president also announced in the evening on Twitter having had a "productive" talk on the phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who, he assured, "reaffirmed the sovereignty of Brazil" on the 60% of Amazonia that it shelters. When Berlin suspended some of its Amazon conservation grants in early August, Jair Bolsonaro advised the chancellor to "reforest Germany". In the morning, he told the press: "It is not only Germany, but all of Europe that has no lesson to give us on the environment." The Brazilian president added to be "ready to speak with one country or another, except (with) our dear Macron, as long as he will not retract on the sovereignty (of Brazil) on the Amazon".
Bolsonaro sulks Bic pens, a "French" brand
Still furious with the French president, Jair Bolsonaro said Friday night that he would stop using Bic pens. Until now, the president has signed the official documents with these cheap pens, which he has often brandished in front of the cameras as a symbol of the modesty of his presidential lifestyle, unlike that of his predecessors. "A pen (from the Brazilian brand) Compactor, instead of Bic, will do the trick," he said. The Bic group did not want to comment on the statements of Jair Bolsonaro but said it was "flattered" to be recognized as "a democratic brand".