Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s communications director tested positive for the new coronavirus, just days after traveling with Bolsonaro to a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in Florida.
A statement from the president’s communications office on Thursday said director Fábio Wajngarten's test results have come back positive, and that the presidency is adopting preventive measures to ensure Bolsonaro’s health.
Wajngarten joined Bolsonaro on a three-day trip to the U.S. and on Saturday was at the Mar-a-Lago resort, where he posted a photo of himself posing beside Trump. A video from the event also showed him standing directly behind both presidents as they addressed a crowd.
The meeting also included Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump, son-in-law Jared Kushner, former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, Brazil’s foreign minister Ernesto Araujo, and Bolsonaro’s son Eduardo, who is a federal lawmaker, among others.
“We had dinner in Florida at Mar-a-Lago with the entire delegation," Trump told reporters on Thursday in the Oval Office. “I don’t know if the press aide was there. But we did nothing very unusual."
Wajngarten initially denied a report on Wednesday that he had been tested for the virus, saying on his social media account that his health was fine. He is now in self-quarantine at home, according to the statement.
Local newspaper Estado de S.Paulo reported that Bolsonaro has been tested for coronavirus, with results expected Friday.
The government also communicated with U.S. authorities so that they can take cautionary measures, the Brazilian statement said.
The White House did not respond to repeated questions about the development, including whether the president and his senior staff are being tested for the virus and who, if anyone is planning to self-quarantine, given their direct contact with someone who has now tested positive.
Florida's Senator Rick Scott, who met Bolsonaro in Miami, also said in a statement that he will self-quarantine despite believing his personal risk is low.