- End of the EU? Brussels Takes Massive Swipe at Poland as Crisis Continues
by SOFIA PETKAR, http://www.express.co.uk/
THE European Union’s top court has ordered Poland to immediately stop a large-scale logging operation in the primeval Bialoweiza forest as Warsaw continues to clash with Brussels.
It is the latest clash between the EU and Poland after the bloc waded into Warsaw’s plans for judicial reforms. The ruling comes as part of attempts to save the trees at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed forest, as a European Union lodged case against Warsaw looks likely to drag on for years.
A spokeswoman for the European Court of Justice (ECJ) gave no immediate reason for the interim ruling, but it follows a legal appeal from the European Commission earlier this month.
In an interim decision, the ECJ said the logging should stop immediately as it could cause “serious and irreversible damage” to the forest. The main case filed by the Commission against Warsaw at the ECJ could take years to conclude.
The European Commission says the ongoing logging at the forest, which is near the city of Hajnówka, violates the bloc’s wildlife protection laws. Straddling the border between Poland and Belarus, Bialowieza is one of Europe’s oldest and last remaining ancient forests. Covering around 350,606 acres, it is made up of mixed forest, wetlands and river valleys. The forest is home to Europe’s largest herd of bison, and more than 250 bird species – some incredibly rare.