The Brazilian President has racked up fresh controversy after he made a statement in which he accused Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio of funneling money for allegedly setting the Amazon rainforests on fire.

Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, in a statement, to his supporters said that the "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" actor Leonardo DiCaprio was funding nonprofit organizations that have been accused of starting the fires in the Amazon rainforest.

"DiCaprio is a cool guy, isn't he? Giving money to set the Amazon on fire," Bolsonaro told supporters on Friday reported the Associated Press.

Moved by the tragic fires, DiCaprio's environmental organization Earth Alliance has pledged $5 million to help protect the Amazon rainforest.

The comments from the Brazilian President Bolsonaro came days after a series of raids carried out on some prominent nonprofit groups.

Earlier this week, heavily armed security personnel raided the offices of an award-winning Brazilian NGO - Health and Happiness Project, also as known as PSA in Para, The Guardian had reported. The police also arrested four volunteer firefighters, who the government claimed allegedly was behind the intentional fires started in the Amazon rainforests.

The raids were carried out three months after President Bolsonaro accused the NGOs in the country for their role in the forest fires. A video, which was uploaded by the volunteer firefighters, is also being used as evidence by the police. The clipping, however, doesn't show anyone lighting the fire.

The number of forest fires this year in Brazil had seen an 85 percent increase compared to last year, with over 80,000 fires been detected the rainforests. While the Brazilian government has been blaming the NGOs, there have been reports that real estate developers supported by the state government were behind the intentional burning.


 
 
 
View this post on Instagram

#Regram #RG @rainforestalliance: The lungs of the Earth are in flames. ? The Brazilian Amazon—home to 1 million Indigenous people and 3 million species—has been burning for more than two weeks straight. There have been 74,000 fires in the Brazilian Amazon since the beginning of this year—a staggering 84% increase over the same period last year (National Institute for Space Research, Brazil). Scientists and conservationists attribute the accelerating deforestation to President Jair Bolsonaro, who issued an open invitation to loggers and farmers to clear the land after taking office in January.⁣ ⁣ The largest rainforest in the world is a critical piece of the global climate solution. Without the Amazon, we cannot keep the Earth's warming in check. ⁣ ⁣ The Amazon needs more than our prayers. So what can YOU do?⁣ ⁣ ✔ As an emergency response, donate to frontline Amazon groups working to defend the forest. ⁣ ✔ Consider becoming a regular supporter of the Rainforest Alliance's community forestry initiatives across the world's most vulnerable tropical forests, including the Amazon; this approach is by far the most effective defense against deforestation and natural forest fires, but it requires deep, long-term collaboration between the communities and the public and private sectors. ✔ Stay on top of this story and keep sharing posts, tagging news agencies and influencers. ⁣ ✔ Be a conscious consumer, taking care to support companies committed to responsible supply chains.⁣ Eliminate or reduce consumption of beef; cattle ranching is one of the primary drivers of Amazon deforestation. ✔ When election time comes, VOTE for leaders who understand the urgency of our climate crisis and are willing to take bold action—including strong governance and forward-thinking policy.⁣ ⁣ #RainforestAlliance #SaveTheAmazon #PrayForAmazonia #AmazonRainforest #ActOnClimate #ForestsResist #ClimateCrisis ?: @mohsinkazmitakespictures / Windy.com

A post shared by Leonardo DiCaprio (@leonardodicaprio) on Aug 22, 2019 at 7:12am PDT