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Russia urges Estonia not to bury ASF-infected cattle near Lake Chudskoe

Russia’s Natural Resources and Environment Minister Sergey Donskoy. Photo: novostienergetiki.ru

Russia’s Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has urged Estonia to stop burying pigs killed by African swine fever near Lake Chudskoe-Pskov (Lake Peipus).

As EADaily’s correspondent was informed by the press service of the Ministry on Aug 28, Russia’s Natural Resources and Environment Minister Sergey Donskoy has sent a relevant request to Estonia’s Agriculture Minister Urmas Kruuse.

The burial site is located just 5 km far from the town of Mustvee and contains almost 3,000 bodies of pigs probably killed by African swine fever. The mayor of Mustvee is protesting as the site may be unsafe.

Donskoy deems it totally unacceptable to bury cattle killed by African swine fever or slaughtered on suspicion of having the virus near a big cross-border lake like Chudskoe. The Russian minister supposes that the site will receive dead cattle from all over Estonia, so, the vehicles that will transport the dead inflected bodies will cross uninfected territories. Each stage of this process is dangerous as there is a risk that the virus may get into the environment and have unpredictable consequences for the health of humans and animals. The ministry’s experts warn that the virus can stay in the body of a dead pig for 2-10 weeks and in its meat and waste for 5 months and more. In the soil it can stay for 4-8 months depending on season. If from the site the virus gets into ground and flood waters, it may spread all over the lake and infect human and animals.

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