An aerial view of a burning tract of Amazon jungle as it is cleared by loggers and farmers near Porto Velho, Brazil August 29, 2019. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes
BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro said on Friday he may have news later in the day on his request to U.S. President Donald Trump for help fighting the Amazon rainforest fires.
Speaking to reporters in Brasilia, Bolsonaro said news on this front could materialize after Foreign Minister Ernesto Araujo and the president’s son Eduardo Bolsonaro meet with the U.S. president, although it was unclear exactly when the meeting will take place.
The two flew to Washington on Thursday evening, with Eduardo Bolsonaro telling reporters before departing that the Amazon crisis would “certainly” be discussed.
Eduardo Bolsonaro will be appointed by his father as the new Brazilian ambassador to the United States, but his name has not yet been sent to the Senate for voting and confirmation.
President Bolsonaro also told reporters on Friday he will talk to German Chancellor Angela Merkel later in the day.
“A phone call with Angela Merkel is scheduled for today. I am ready to talk with some people, except our dear Macron, unless he apologizes about our sovereignty over the Amazon,” Bolsonaro said, referring to French President Emmanuel Macron.
Earlier this week Bolsonaro said he would not accept an offer of at least $20 million to help fight the Amazon fires announced by Macron at a Group of Seven nations leaders’ summit unless he withdrew what he called “insults” against him.
The two leaders have become embroiled in a public war of words over Brazil’s handling of the Amazon fires and the international response, which has descended into a deeply personal spat.
Bolsonaro also said on Friday he wants to bar the creation of new indigenous reserves in Brazil, and will review those already in place. He may travel to the Amazon region next week, he told reporters.
Reporting by Pedro Fonseca; Writing by Jamie McGeever; Editing by David Gregorio