Brazil on Monday rejected aid worth $20 million offered by G7 countries to fight the Amazon fires and told French President Emmanuel Macron to take care of "the forests in Europe".
"We appreciate (the offer), but maybe those resources are more relevant to reforest Europe," Onyx Lorenzoni, Chief of Staff to Brazillian President Jair Bolsonaro, told state media G1 news.
The Brazilian official slammed the G7 countries' offer of emergency aid to help extinguish the blazing Amazon rainforest as a colonialist gesture. "Macron cannot even avoid a foreseeable fire in a church that is a world heritage site. What does he intend to teach our country?" he said.
Bolsonaro stated that Brazil was being treated like "a colony or no man's land" and said the aid was an attack on the country's sovereignty.
The emergency fund for the fire in the rainforests, described as "the lungs of the world" due to its capacity to absorb carbon dioxide, was initially welcomed by Brazilian environment Minister Ricardo Salles.
The fire has spread 950,000 hectares (2.3 million acres) according to latest inputs.
The Brazillian government affirmed its stance against the emergency funds after a meeting with top officials. "Brazil is a democratic, free nation that never had colonialist and imperialist practices, as perhaps is the objective of the Frenchman Macron," Lorenzoni said.
Amazon and the blazing diplomacy
However, Macron told news channel France 2 on the sidelines of the G7 summit that while he respected Brazil's sovereignty, the Amazon fires is a global issue.
"The Amazon forest is a subject for the whole planet... We cannot allow you to destroy everything," Macron said.
The fires have made international headlines, drawing attention to the rampant deforestation in Brazil, which has reportedly increased after President Bolsonaro took office in January. Reports suggest that the fires were a deliberate attempt to clear the forest in order to sell the land to farmers and ranchers.
According to a report by Brazil space research agency INPE, compared to last year, deforestation in the Amazon has increased by 67 percent.
While the Brazilian Armed Forces have been deployed and are currently operating in nine Amazon states to contain the fire, international communities have stated that Brazil needs help from allies in containing the extreme wildlife fires.
Canda has offered to contribute C$15 million ($11.30 million) in aid and send water bombers to Brazil.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the G7 summit on Monday said, "One of the things we have seen over the past years as Canada has faced increasingly extreme wildfire events is there is a global network of support and friends that lean on each other."
Chilean President Sebastian Pinera described a two-fold strategy of implementing emergency efforts in containing the fire.
"Countries urgently need firefighters and specialised water bombers. This will be the first step that will be implemented immediately. The second phase is to protect these forests, protect the biodiversity they contain and reforest this region of the world," he said.
Describing the fires as a global emergency, Macron announced France's willingness to offer military support. He also mentioned, according to Reuters, that the G-7 countries - the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States - will draw an initiative for the reforestation and conservation of biodiversity in the Amazon, that will be launched during next month's UN General Assembly in New York.
Tensions between Macron and Bolsonaro have deteriorated and turned personal after the Brazilian President mocked Macron's wife on Facebook.
The French President, addressing the incident on Monday stated, "He (Bolsonaro) said very disrespectful things about my wife. I have great respect for the Brazilian people and can only hope they soon have a president who is up to the job."