France's President Emmanuel Macron and Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro at the G20 Summit in Osaka in June. Photo: Jacques Witt/AFP/Getty Images

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro has said he will only accept a $20 million aid package from G7 nations to fight fires in the Amazon rainforest if French President Emmanuel Macron apologizes, according to the AP.

The big picture: Macron and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro have traded barbs on Twitter over the fate of the Amazon, which has seen an 84% increase in wildfires this year compared to 2018. Bolsonaro has described the offer of international help as a “colonialist mentality," while Macron has questioned the Brazilian president's commitment to environmentalism. Per the AP, Bolsonaro says Macron must take back some of his comments "and then we can speak."

The backdrop: Tension had been building between Macron and Bolsonaro over the Brazilian president's handling of the fires and his pursuit of economic growth at the expense of the Amazon, AP notes.

  • Macron said the Amazon, while mostly Brazilian, is a world issue because the rainforest represents "the lungs of the planet" and that his message to Brazil Bolsonaro is "we cannot allow you to destroy everything," per AP.
  • Macron also noted in a speech Tuesday that the money is aimed at nine countries in the greater Amazon, not just Brazil, the AP writes. France also has a vested interest in the area with French Guiana being just north of Brazil.
"We respect your sovereignty. It’s your country. The Amazon forest is a subject for the whole planet. We can help you reforest. We can find the means for your economic development that respects the natural balance. But we cannot allow you to destroy everything."
— Macron

Onyx Lorenzoni, chief of staff to Bolsonaro, took a swipe at Macron over the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral this year, as he told the G1 news website that the government appreciated the offer "but maybe those resources are more relevant to reforest Europe."

Macron cannot even avoid a foreseeable fire in a church that is a world heritage site. What does he intend to teach our country?"
— Lorenzoni

Brazilian Environment Minister Ricardo Salles had earlier welcomed the G7 funding to fight the fires that have swept across 2.3 million acres, but after a meeting between Bolsonaro and his ministers, the Brazilian government changed course, according to AFP.

"Brazil is a democratic, free nation that never had colonialist and imperialist practices, as perhaps is the objective of the Frenchman Macron."
— Brazilian Environment Minister Ricardo Salles comments, translated by AFP

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Trump says he wants 9 justices in case Supreme Court must decide 2020 election

President Trump told reporters at the White House on Wednesday that part of his urgency to quickly push through a replacement for the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is that he believes the Supreme Court may have to decide the result of the 2020 election.

Why it matters: Trump claimed at the Republican National Convention that the only way he will lose the election is if it is "rigged," and he has declined to say whether he would accept the results of November's election if he loses to Joe Biden.

"Not enough": Protesters react to no murder charges in Breonna Taylor case

A grand jury has indicted Brett Hankison, one of the Louisville police officers who entered Breonna Taylor's home in March, on three counts of wanton endangerment for firing shots blindly into neighboring apartments.

The state of play: Angering protesters, the grand jury did not indict any of the three officers involved in the botched drug raid on homicide or manslaughter charges related to the death of Taylor.

Judge orders Eric Trump to testify in New York probe before election

Photo: Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images

A judge on Wednesday ordered Eric Trump to comply with a subpoena to testify before the presidential election in a New York probe into the Trump family business.

The state of play: New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) last month said her office had filed a lawsuit to compel the Trump Organization to comply with subpoenas related to an investigation into whether President Trump and his company improperly inflated the value of its assets on financial statements.

Get Axios AM in your inbox

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!