Argentinian President Apologises After Saying ‘Brazilians Came From the Jungle’ After Massive Uproar

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by Aleksandra Serebriakova

Argentinian President Alberto Fernandez, who is proud of his country’s ties with Europe, sparked outrage with his comments about people from the two most populous Latin American nations.

Both Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro and his son Eduardo had a response to Argentina’s President Alberto Fernandez, who triggered a storm of allegations of racism after telling visiting Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez that “Brazilians came from the jungle”.

“The Mexicans came from the Indians, the Brazilians came from the jungle, but we Argentines came from the ships. And they were ships that came from Europe,” Fernandez said, apparently in a bid to play up his country’s links to the European continent.

Act 1: Argentina’s president says something horrifically racist while talking to Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez.
“The Mexicans came from the Indians, the Brazilians came out of the jungle, but, us, Argentines, arrived from the boats … boats that came from Europe.” https://t.co/jzFPUxNwT0

— Daniel Politi (@dpoliti) June 9, 2021

This is our racist president of Argentina.
You won’t get something worse.

“Mexicans descend from Indians, Brazilians from the jungle and Argentines from ships” https://t.co/gS1NnGXKU2

— ☠ El acertijo de Sansón ☠ (@Triquin) June 9, 2021

The president’s words were actually a quote from a 1982 song by Argentinian singer Litto Nebbia, who Fernandez is a fan of, many rushed to point out.  But the comment nevertheless caused an uproar on social media, swiftly prompting Fernandez to apologise:

“I did not mean to offend anyone, in any case, whoever has felt offended… I give my apologies,” the president wrote on Twitter, noting that his country is “proud of our diversity” and that over five million immigrants arrived in Argentina in the first half of the 20th century.

A nadie quise ofender, de todas formas, quien se haya sentido ofendido o invisibilizado, desde ya mis disculpas.

— Alberto Fernández (@alferdez) June 9, 2021

According to congressman Eduardo Bolsonaro, son of Brazil’s president, the comments were really “racist”. He moved on to target the country’s troubled economy, noting in Twitter: “I say the ship that is sinking is that of Argentina.”

Alberto Fernandez, president of Argentina

2019: “Bolsonaro is racist but Argentina will have a good relationship with Brazil.”

2021: “Brazilians came from the jungle. Argentinians arrived by ship.” pic.twitter.com/M7xTWrDidI

— Dr. Rhiannon Dauster 🌌 (@RhiannonDauster) June 9, 2021

His father President Bolsonaro, who has never been a fan of “leftist bandit” Fernandez, as he gently dubbed him, posted a photo in response. In the image, Bolsonaro was pictured alongside a group of indigenous people while wearing native head-dresses.

“Jungle!”, was his single-worded caption to the photo alongside Brazilian flag.

– SELVA! 🇧🇷 pic.twitter.com/cT9AGjdj5K

— Jair M. Bolsonaro (@jairbolsonaro) June 10, 2021

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