Home / News / World News / Activists climb ancient trees to stop Polish logging (VIDEO)

Activists climb ancient trees to stop Polish logging (VIDEO)

Activists climbed trees and blocked felling machines in Poland’s primeval Bialowieza Forest on Tuesday in a bid to stop what they say is an illegal logging operation authorised by the government.

The campaigners accuse Warsaw of ignoring EU orders to protect one of Europe’s last ancient woodlands – part of a wider clash between the bloc and its biggest eastern member.

Related stories

Poland’s environment minister, Jan Szyszko, has dismissed the orders and the activists’ allegations, saying the work is limited and only meant to control a beetle outbreak and remove weak, unsafe trunks.

Campaigners said they had seen evidence of commercial logging operations, threatening the habitat of the European bison, lynx and rare birds in a UNESCO World Heritage site.

“Activists from all over Europe came to protest against the destruction of our joint heritage and to demand its protection,” Greenpeace official Robert Cyglicki said.

He said Tuesday’s protest was the biggest in the forest since Poland authorised an increase in felling in 2016.

Poland’s ruling nationalist and eurosceptic Law and Justice party (PiS) has repeatedly clashed with EU officials since coming to power in 2015.

Activists and opposition politicians have accused the government of moving towards authoritarian rule by tightening control over courts and prosecutors, as well as state media.

PiS says the criticism is unacceptable foreign meddling. (Reuters)

Check Also

Greek police find dead crew from plane crash

Police in Greece have confirmed that two people – who had been on board a …

Macron: Greater clarity needed to break Brexit deadlock

French President Emmanuel Macron has warned Theresa May greater clarity is needed over Britain’s negotiating …