Death of thousands of fish in polluted river sparks tension between Poland and Germany

Thousands of fish float lifeless on the Oder River, which flows through Germany and Poland. Everything suggests that these schools of fish flowing, belly in the air, in eastern Germany, were carried by the current from Poland where the first cases were reported by inhabitants of the region. and fishermen 15 days ago.

A spokesman for the German Ministry of the Environment told reporters that “ the reporting chain envisaged for such cases did not work “. German Environment Minister Steffi Lemke has demanded a full investigation to determine the causes of this “environmental disaster”. In the meantime, the local population is called upon to stay away from the river, which is usually considered clean.

A “foreign substance”

The German authorities already believe that the fish were probably poisoned. Their death is ” atypical, “ explained Axel Vogel, Minister of the Environment of the Land of Brandenburg.

In Poland, the prosecution was seized of the case. This Saturday, August 13, the Ministry of the Interior announced that it was offering a reward of 1 million zlotys, or just over 200,000 euros, to anyone who would help find “ perpetrators of this environmental catastrophe”.

Meanwhile, outrage is growing in the country. The right-wing government is coming under fire for not reacting sooner, when tons of dead fish have already been fished out. The opposition, local authorities and environmental organizations are demanding explanations.

“Huge amounts of chemical waste”

Some even asking for the resignation of officials within the Climate Ministry, including a deputy minister who was still encouraging people on Thursday to go swimming in the Oder… “It looks like Chernobyl, when, after the disaster, the Soviet power sent people to take part in the May Day parade”was offended by environmental activist Daniel Petrykiewicz.

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki tried to justify himself this Friday, August 12: “at first, everyone thought it was just a local problem”. “Huge quantities of chemical waste were probably dumped into the river, with full awareness of the risk and its consequences”, he judged. According to him, the river “will need whole years to return to its natural state”.

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