Brazil’s president has ordered the armed forces to fight record forest fires in the Amazon, amid international outrage over rising deforestation, international media reported.
President Jair Bolsonaro deployed soldiers in nature reserves, indigenous lands, and border areas beset by fires. The move is an apparent reversal from Mr Bolsonaro, who has been accused of emboldening miners and loggers. Other countries, including France and Ireland, had threatened to target Brazil’s economy if it did not act to stop the fires.
Experts and campaigners say Bolsonaro’s administration has given a green light to rainforest destruction. Environmental groups held protests in cities across Brazil on Friday to demand action to combat the fires, and protesters gathered outside the Brazilian embassies around the world.
The largest rainforest in the world, the Amazon is a vital carbon store that slows down the pace of global warming. It is known as the “lungs of the world” and is home to about three million species of plants and animals, and one million indigenous people.
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