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Macron and Lula 'bromance' on Brazilian island sparks social media frenzy

The presidents of France and Brazil - both wearing white open-necked shirts - have been pictured smiling warmly at each other and embracing, with social media users calling it a "bromance".

Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva clutched Emmanuel Macron's hand as he led him through some difficult terrain on the island of Combu in the Amazon rainforest.

The leaders stopped and smiled for the cameras, as Mr da Silva, also known as Lula, clutched his French counterpart's wrist.

When they headed off again, Mr Macron was grinning widely.

The pictures have been delighting people on the internet.

A social media user on X said: "Macron and Lula look like they just got married and are having a whirlwind honeymoon", while another wrote: "Pre-wedding shoot of the year."

Mr Macron has been on a three-day visit to Brazil that aims to relaunch the bilateral relationship and strategic partnership which stalled during the previous government of Jair Bolsonaro.

It is not the first time the French president has appeared to enjoy a close friendship with a fellow world leader.

He and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak seemed to get on well when they met in Paris in March 2023.

"Le bromance" was mooted. The pair had similar backgrounds, were close in age, and even had a comparable sartorial style, it was suggested.

There were also some chuckles with former PM Boris Johnson, although, according to Reuters, the two men had some disagreements over "sausages and submarines".

Mr Macron also appeared to enjoy Donald Trump's company.

"The couple seemed happy to be together again," wrote The New York Times in April 2018 when the French president visited the White House.

"I like him a lot," Mr Trump told reporters.

Earlier, in the Oval Office, the then American leader had "gently brushed what he said was dandruff off Mr Macron's shoulder", the paper reported.

Its correspondent added: "Moments later, as they sat side by side, Mr Macron placed his hand on Mr Trump's knee."

That may be a bromance that could be revived later in the year, should Mr Trump win a second term in the White House.