21 January 2018, Sunday, 17:18

Lukashenka equals pig farms to nuclear facilities


The ruler promises to use “draconian” measures to fight African swine fever (ASF), which does not exist officially.

Lukashenka warns that if no necessary measures are taken to ensure biological protection from ASF, those responsible for it will be punished and criminal cases will be opened. He said it today at a meeting in Minsk, BelTA reports.

“I have already warned executives responsible for it and the government that we will begin to open criminal cases over this problem next week. Draconian measures against responsible executives will be taken,” the ruler said.

Lukashenka demands executives of all levels take the issue seriously and organise access control at pig farms as if "they were nuclear facilities".

He also noted that the stock and pork sales should be restored by the end of the year.

In January 2014, Russia, Lithuania and Ukraine informed the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) about the outbreaks of African swine fever in their countries. ASF was found in Poland a month later. Latvia reported about the ASF virus in June. So, all countries bordering on Belarus have reported about the unfavourable epizootic situation.

However, Minsk thinks the country managed to cope with the virus. Belarus has not reported to the OIE this year that any sick animals were found in Belarus. The country only reported that the ASF outbreaks found in the Hrodna and Vitebsk regions last year were resolved. Villagers, however, say animals continue to die of ASF.