Written by Staff Writer
An image of a yellow jersey on a horse has caused a social media storm in Brazil — and what initially seemed to be one strange image has since sparked calls for justice in an area that has seen an increase in violence, particularly in Brazil’s western cities.
Written in Portuguese by a local Brazilian television personality, the photo was widely circulated on social media platforms after it was taken during the Tour of Chile at the weekend, with the caption: “Reconfirmed #Reconquista.”
Confusion ensued after it was translated into English and pictures appeared online of ‘Reconquista’ meant ‘Re-conquest’.
Now, a yellow jersey is trending again on social media and in online forums with an original version of the story now being called ‘Reconquista!'”
The original photo showed the leader of the yellow jersey-themed tour, Fabio Salcedo, driving across La Paz in the capital city of the Peruvian capital Lima as the royal red bike landed next to the Spanish-american flag.
CNN International contacted both newspapers, Argos and Liaison, which are in charge of the Cartagena Herald and Calverta Pueblo, to inquire if the original photo was a fake and find out if they felt an apology should be issued.
However, Jorge Botello, an editor at El Diario, was said to have advised that “Liaison were not parties to the making of the image and that they (are) not responsible for it.
“It was intended for an event, which was meant to say ‘Reconquista’,” said Botello.
The online version of the Cartagena Herald tells a different story and calls for a public apology from the newspaper.
“Liaison recognize that ‘Reconquista’, perhaps in some type of faux sense, arose, and we regret if we caused any hurt, it wasn’t intended to,” it said.
“We have always maintained it is regrettable that there are also overtones to the meaning of ‘Reconquista’. Such misuse is avoidable, and we do not believe that an image is either deliberate or accidental.
“We would say, then, that in no way was we trying to incite, promote or humiliate the indigenous indigenous Amazonians.”
The story became more controversial when a similar image of Salcedo’s ride in the Tour of Catalonia, held over the summer in the Spanish Mediterranean region, appeared online.
In that photo, Salcedo drove a “Bad Boys” bicycle and a similar plan was announced by Tour of Catalonia with his inclusion in the race, which was won by Mark Cavendish.
CNN International contacted representatives from the race but they did not wish to comment on the image controversy.
Brazil’s Tele-Lima reported comments by the television personality, Leandro da Silva Luis, explaining that Salcedo ‘drew inspiration’ from his appearance in the Tour of Catalonia.
“We (the Brazilians) took all the elements of Salcedo’s appearance in the Tour of Catalonia,” he was quoted as saying.
“After seeing the racial and political conflicts in the Amazon region, we said that if Salcedo can use the yellow jersey, so can we — we’re not the same.”
The video remix also calls for the disintegration of the Amazon region and is captioned: “The new Amazon.”
CNN International has not independently confirmed these allegations.