Russia: tense situation around polluting waste dump near Moscow

Russian authorities on Friday attempted to calm the anger of residents of a small town near Moscow, who protested in the thousands to demand the closure of a polluting waste dump whose emissions had caused the hospitalization of

Protests over the presence of landfills have increased in recent weeks in several cities around the Russian capital, where anger is fueled by the impression of residents to be "second-class citizens". "

In Volokolamsk, a town of 20,000 inhabitants located about 100 kilometers north-west of Moscow, where the situation is most acute, the town hall announced that it began distributing respiratory masks to the population and put Russian authorities set up a monitoring plan for the situation.

The authorities also assured that residents with respiratory problems (19659002) The Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations nevertheless found that there was "no need" to set up an emergency regime or organize evacuation.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that President Vladimir Putin was monitoring the situation and was "in permanent contact" with the local authorities.

"This is about a complex problem that can not be solved overnight. The work continues, "Peskov told reporters.

The inhabitants of Volokolamsk have been denouncing for months the nuisance associated with the nearby Iadrovo landfill, which was put into production in 1979, and whose toxic emissions affected some 50 of children on March 21.

Several thousand people gathered again Thursday before the town hall to demand the establishment of an exceptional regime and the closure of the landfill.

The authorities have promised to cover the landfill by the end of the month and install a degassing system in June

But the situation continues to worsen: new toxic emissions took place in the nights of Wednesday and Thursday, forcing the authorities to postpone classes in schools

A new demonstration to demand measures from the authorities is scheduled for Sunday in Volokolamsk.

– Interpellations –

Inspired by the example of Volokolamsk, demonstrations demanding the closure of landfills took place in several other cities in the belt around Moscow, where are taken waste generated by the giant Russian capital.

In Kolomna, city of 140,000 inhabitants to a hundred of kilometers south-east of Moscow, more than a hundred people have been trying for a week to block the truck traffic on the road leading to the "Volovitchi" household waste dump.

According to the NGO OVD -Info, specialized in the follow-up of the arrests, about thirty demonstrators were briefly questioned by the police Wednesday in Kolomna before being released. Three of them were charged with disturbing public order or refusing to obey

"We are like second-class citizens Why should we be treated worse than others? worse than the Muscovites? ", a protester indignant in a dialogue with a local official, according to a video broadcast on the internet.

Other cities, like Kline in North-West Moscow, fear for their part that the situation around their own landfill does not worsen after the promises made by the authorities to resolve the situation in Volokolamsk.

Faced with the growing number of complaints from dissatisfied Russians throughout the country in recent months, the authorities have acknowledged that the air quality measurement system was failing in the country

Due to lack of funding, this system is simply absent or obsolete due to lack of modernization since the collapse of the USSR.

in a particularly tense social context in Russia after a fire left 64 dead, including 41 children Sunday in Kemerovo, Siberia, which raised a wave of anger across the country at the shocking violations of safety standards found by investigators.

Russia: tense situation around polluting waste dump near Moscow

Russian authorities on Friday attempted to calm the anger of residents of a small town near Moscow, who protested in the thousands to demand the closure of a polluting waste dump whose emissions had caused the hospitalization of children

The Volokolamsk town hall, a town of 20,000 inhabitants located about 100 kilometers north-west of the Russian capital, announced that it had begun distributing respiratory masks to the population and put in place a surveillance plan for the according to Russian agencies.

The authorities also assured that residents suffering from respiratory problems could be treated in sanatoriums.

The Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations nevertheless decided that was "not necessary" to set up an emergency regime or to organize the evacuation of the inhabitants.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, for his It is reported that President Vladimir Putin followed the situation and was in "constant contact" with the local authorities.

"This is a complex problem that can not be solved overnight. The work continues, "Peskov told reporters.

The inhabitants of Volokolamsk have been denouncing for months the nuisance associated with the nearby Iadrovo landfill, which was put into production in 1979, and whose toxic emissions affected some 50 of children on March 21.

Several thousand people gathered again Thursday before the town hall to demand the establishment of an exceptional regime and the closure of the landfill.

The authorities have promised to cover the landfill by the end of the month and install a degassing system in June

But the situation continues to worsen: new toxic emissions took place in the nights of Wednesday and Thursday, Forcing the authorities to postpone classes in schools

A new demonstration to demand measures from the authorities is planned for Sunday in Volokolamsk.

Faced with the multiplication of complaints from Rus its dissatisfaction throughout the country in recent months, the authorities have recognized that the system of measurement of air quality was failing in the country.

For lack of funding, this system is simply absent or obsolete for lack of having been modernized since the fall of the USSR

Russia: about fifty children intoxicated by gases emitted from a landfill

Toxic gases emitted by a polluting waste dump not far from Moscow resulted in the medical care of about fifty children, provoking anger of a rare virulence of the inhabitants against Russian authorities considered indifferent towards the ecological situation

"Do not kill our children!" or "I want to breathe! I want to live!" could be read on the placards of some 200 people gathered Wednesday afternoon in front of the Volokolamsk hospital, about 100 kilometers northwest of the Russian capital.

For weeks residents have been denouncing the inconvenience associated with the nearby Iadrovo landfill, which was put into production in 1979. Their protests led the authorities to promise to cover it with soil by the end of the month and install a degassing system in June.

But the situation worsened on Wednesday with the appearance of a foul odor, the air becoming difficult to breathe, especially around the landfill as found by an AFP journalist.

In total, 57 children sought medical assistance mainly because of vertigo, and five of them were hospitalized, according to a statement from the regional administration.

"We wake up every night because of this smell. And what are we going to do in the summer? How can we live like this? ", Told AFP Anna Louzova, 10-year-old schoolgirl.

The mayor of the city, Piotr Lazarev, He immediately blamed the Iadrovo discharge, located three kilometers from Volokolamsk, already in the sights of local residents. The latter have been demonstrating regularly in recent weeks, giving place in the countryside for the presidential election to scenes that have become rare in Russia in recent years, as any protest is met with firmness.

"The situation gets worse and worse each day that (…), particularly because of landfill gas discharges, "Lazarev said in an interview with Business FM radio. "These smells have a detrimental effect on the inhabitants of Volokolamsk, and many children have had to be treated today (…), because there was this strong smell."

– 'Assassin' –

Reassuring, the local authorities identified a toxic gas leak in Iadrovo but assured that the situation was under control

In its daily report on the state of the air in the Moscow region, the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations designated the Iadrovo Discharge as "Source of Air Pollution" in Volokolamsk and Surroundings.

However, after analyzing the air quality on Wednesday, "no concentration of polluting substances in the air above the norms has been found (…) No threat to the inhabitants of the city has been detected, "said the ministry.

But the inhabitants of Volokolamsk, who were numerous Wednesday to complain about social networks of stench on the streets s of the city, lost patience

 Volokolamsk residents holding placards asking:

Volokolamsk residents holding placards demanding "Do not kill our children!" are gathered in front of the local hospital. (AFP – Maxime POPOV)

In the afternoon, nearly 200 people were gathered near the Volokolamsk Central Hospital.

"It's been two months since the air here is unbreathable. nausea and hypertension, "told local AFP a local resident, Anna Grape, 50.

Greeted with cries of" shame! " and "Assassin!", the governor of the Moscow region, Andrei Vorobiov, has promised to accelerate the closure of the landfill.

Faced with the growing number of complaints from disgruntled Russians throughout the country in recent months, the authorities recognized that the air quality measurement system was failing. Due to lack of funding, this system is simply absent or obsolete due to lack of modernization since the fall of the USSR.

US Consider New Sanctions Against Russia

Senior White House officials say the Trump government is considering additional sanctions against Russia and is wary of possible interference in November congressional elections.

Republicans and Democrats criticize President Donald Trump for not imposing sanctions approved by Congress over Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The official said on Wednesday (21/2) that the sanctions process was slow for legal reasons and not only reacted to bad news and criticism.

"The sanctions process is long, heavy, not easy But when there is evidence and we are ready, we proceed with sanctions, "the official said.

Director of National Intelligence And Coats told Congressmen last week that Russia plans to target the November election, confident that its activities in 2016 presidential election success. [as/al]

Russia Admits A Athlete Using Drugs

The Russian Olympic Committee has admitted that a Russian athlete at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics has tested positive for using a melatonium drug.

After the second test, the Russian delegation said "we express regret for the fact of the incident." said the results of the tests indicate that Russian curler athlete Alexander Krushelnitsky used only a melatonium once.

The Russian delegate argued that the drug was useless if the purpose was to use it to improve performance.

Krushelnitsky won a bronze medal in PyeongChang with his wife in a double mix

See also: Russian athletes Suspected Use Doping in PyeongChang

Meldonium is a drug intended for people who have heart problems and some people believe the drug can help athletes increase breath resistance or stamina. The drug was banned in sports in 2016.

Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova was suspended for 15 months after testing positive for meldonium at the 2016 Australian Open tournament. [gp]