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Date TimeAugust 26, 2019
VoiceThe leaders of the group of seven nations have agreed to provide $20 million in emergency help to stop the Amazon forest fires, President Emmanuel Macron of France said on Monday.
Amazon Wildfires: G7 Leaders Agree $20m Relief Package – But Trump Was Absent
“The reality is that for the emergency aid they especially need financing ... because they don’t have the funds to enable planes, fire-fighting planes to take-off,” a source told Reuters, confirming the $20 million figure (about £16 million).
President Donald Trump was absent from the talks on climate change and biodiversity at a G7 leaders’ summit, with host Macron explaining that he was busy holding bilateral meetings.
Trump backed the leaders’ efforts to tackle the fires raging in the Amazon forest, Macron said.
“He wasn’t in the room, but his team was,” Macron told a news conference after the climate talks. “You shouldn’t interpret the American president’s absence... the U.S. are with us on biodiversity and on the Amazon initiative”.
Trump started the morning behind schedule; his meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel was delayed about two hours.
Trump then met with India’s prime minister Narendra Modi, where he was asked about attending the climate session.
He said it would be his next stop and that he wants clean air and water.The devastating wildfires raging across the Amazon resulted in a war of words between presidents of Brazil and France on Thursday. 
The French president has lead international calls for action in assisting with the blaze, saying “our house is burning” in a tweet posted on Thursday. 
Macron also said the fires should be discussed at the G7 summit that begun on Saturday in Biarritz, France.
The Group of Seven rich countries – the US, Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Britain and Canada – does not include Brazil.
Bolsonaro fired back with his own tweet, writing: “I regret that Macron seeks to make personal political gains in an internal matter for Brazil and other Amazonian countries. The sensationalist tone he used does nothing to solve the problem.”
Trump’s previous comments on climate change have divided opinion.
In 2017, he pulled the US out of the Paris climate agreement which commits countries to curbing rising global temperatures.
The president, who has previously labelled climate change a hoax by the Chinese to hurt US manufacturing, also raised the possibility of negotiating to re-enter the Paris accord or an entirely new deal on terms that were “fair” to the US.
In 2012, Trump sent a tweet stating, “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive.”
He later said he was joking about the Chinese connection, but in years since has continued to call global warming a hoax.
“I’m not denying climate change,” he said in the interview. “But it could very well go back. You know, we’re talking about over a…millions of years.”Related... Brazilian Military Begins Operations To Fight Amazon Fires Emmanuel Macron Threatens To Block EU Trade Deal With Brazil Over Amazon Fires

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