HL Deb 11 November 1999 vol 606 c236WA
Lord Judd

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their policy towards the findings and recommendations of Pekka Haavisto and the United Nations Environment Programme's Balkans Taskforce on pollution of the Danube following the Kosovo conflict; and what action they are taking. [HL4530]

Baroness Amos

The Balkan Taskforce concluded that there is no evidence of an ecological catastrophe for the Danube, but that there is evidence of chronic, long-term pollution as a result of air strikes.

Although there are some serious "hot spots" where contamination, because of air strikes, had occurred, this was against the background of long-term chronic pollution due to inadequate environmental management throughout the Danube basin. A significant factor was the inadequate treatment and storage of hazardous waste in the Former Republic of Yugoslavia.

We will not assist with reconstruction of infrastructure in Serbia until there is a democratically elected government who comply with their international obligations. We are closely monitoring the case for humanitarian assistance.