05:58 GMT +310 December 2019
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    A satellite image shows smoke rising from Amazon rainforest fires in the State of Rondonia, just southwest of Porto Velho, Brazil in the upper Amazon River basin on August 15, 2019

    Venezuelan Foreign Minister Calls on Amazonian Nations to Discuss Wildfires in Region

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    BUENOS AIRES (Sputnik) – The Venezuelan government called on the Amazonian countries to urgently discuss the situation around wildfires in the region, Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said.

    The wildfires in the Amazonian region have been raging for three weeks. According to the satellite data, provided by the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research, this year, the wildfire area increased by 82 percent compared to 2018. Brazil and Bolivia are engaged in fighting the wildfires, while the neighbouring countries have offered assistance to them.

    “The Venezuelan government offered to hold an emergency meeting of foreign ministers of the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization to consider and eliminate ecological and social consequences of the devastating wildfires in the Amazonian region,” Arreaza stressed on Friday.

    The Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization includes Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Bolivia, Suriname, Brazil and Peru, along with Venezuela.

    On Friday, French President Emmanuel Macron called on world leaders ahead of the G7 summit in France to prioritize putting out the wildfires destroying the Amazonian region.

    Similarly, on Thursday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed concern over the fires, saying that amid a global climate crisis, the world could not afford to lose its major source of oxygen and biodiversity.


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