Brazil's president, Jair Bolsonaro, in a public address at the United Nations, stated that the parts of the Amazon rainforest that fall within Brazilian territory belongs to Brazil and not the world. This is in response to the blame put on Bolsonaro by environmental reformers that the president was paying no attention to the acts of deforestation taking place in the rainforest, and that his policies encouraged them.
Conservationists have stated that the policies adopted by Bolsonaro has given leverage to farmers and tree cutters to mow down and clear large areas in the forest. This has resulted in a steep rise in incidents of wildfires.
While addressing the world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly, the Brazilian President said that it was mistaken belief to think of the Amazon as the legacy of the human civilization and a misunderstanding that the rainforests function as the lungs of this world. Bolsonaro added that a few countries resorted to misconceptions and behaved in a way that was not respectful and with a certain spirit of having control. He further said that these countries went on to question Brazil's structure of sovereignty.
Bolsonaro said that a lot of Brazilians citizens were in favor of his policies. It was simply a few people living in and outside of Brazil have insisted on viewing the natives as primitive people.
The public address came a day after a 16-year-old activist, Greta Thunberg, blasted world leaders at the United Nations Climate Action Summit of turning a blind eye towards controlling greenhouse gas emissions that were further leading to disastrous climatic consequences. She further berated the world leaders by accusing them of not taking care of the present generation and believing in something that she called as a fairytale vision of a growing global economy.
Jair Bolsonaro took to office in the month of January and since then he has continuously questioned whether the restricted areas mentioned in Brazil's constitution should continue to be demarcated for the natives since their size was not in accordance with the number of natives living there as more than 800000 natives lived in about 450 restricted areas across Brazil, constituting 12% of brazil's total area.
Bolsonaro's plans to allow mining and agriculture at lands inhabited by the natives has met with a lot of criticism and that led to a lot of protests by environmental reformers when he visited New York for the UNGA.
(With inputs from agencies)