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Mar-25-2012 13:21printcomments

Help Polish Minister Ban MON810 in Poland

Strong Beekeepers Protest and motion for a ban of the GM maize MON810 in Poland!

Anti-MON810 protest in Poland
Autor zdjęcia: Karina Karin
More photos: Festiwal STO GMO

(WARSAW) - A powerful symbolic drama was staged by members of The Coalition for a GMO Free Poland in which thousands of dead bees were laid out on the Ministry steps.

The Minister of Agriculture, Mr Sawicki, never appeared. However he later saw a delegation in his office and, during a public broadcast, announced that he had set in motion a ban of the GM maize MON810.

At first glance this appeared to be a genuine prohibition, however, such is the nature of the modern politician that in the smaller print was the statement that 'this would only be possible with the permission of the European Commission'.

On March 15th 2012, over 1,500 beekeepers joined forces with ICPPC and the Coalition for a GMO Free Poland campaigners in a march through the streets of Warsaw to protest the growing number of bee deaths in Poland.

Autor zdjęcia: Ben Pytliński

Beekeepers have become increasingly concerned that both agrichemicals and GMO are playing a significant role in destroying bee colonies in North America, Europe and beyond, with numbers also falling in Poland.

The Polish Beekeepers Association took the lead in organising this protest which started in the old city and finished-up outside the Ministry of Agriculture.

Hundreds of beekeepers dressed in their traditional working costumes and puffing smoke from their hive smoke guns marched bravely through the Warsaw streets watched by an amazed audience and a large contingency of media. They wore yellow jackets carrying the famous quote from Albert Einstein which warns that if bees were to be killed-off mankind would suffer the same fate within four years.

Anti GMO activists mixed with the beekeepers and many original costumes, banners and bee-like objects were deployed in drawing attention to the plight of these all important polinators.

At the Ministry of Agriculture the long procession came together to demand that the Minister ban GMO and prohibit the use of toxic agrichemicals in the Polish countryside. A powerful symbolic drama was staged by members of The Coalition for a GMO Free Poland in which thousands of dead bees were laid out on the Ministry steps.

The Minister, Mr Sawicki, never appeared. However he later saw a delegation in his office and, during a public broadcast, announced that he had set in motion a ban of the GM maize MON810, the only licensed GM food crop in Europe aside from Amflora GM potato (for starch).

At first glance this appeared to be a genuine prohibition, however, such is the nature of the modern politician that in the smaller print was the statement that 'this would only be possible with the permission of the European Union'!

Needless to say none of the nine European Union Countries that have already prohibited MON 810 did so by asking the permission of the EU. They made their legal positions and argued their case with Brussels afterwards.

Nonetheless, this event perhaps marks a turning point in our long running campaign to ban GMO in Poland. It was the first time that beekeepers had ever staged a public demonstration and they were very pleased with the way it went and the solidarity expressed by other participants. The media coverage was well above average and real public pressure is now being felt by the Polish government. Spring is coming.

Your help might make all the difference in getting Mr Sawicki to introduce the all important ban of MON 810.

Please write to him demanding that he does not 'wait for European Commission's approval' but gets on and does the job! This is what the other 9 EU Countries have done. Please do it! And do send us a copy of your letter.

The address you need is here:

The Minister of Agriculture, Mr Marek Sawicki
e-mail: marek.sawicki@minrol.gov.pl ; tel.: 0048 226231510; fax: 0048 226231788

If you can donate to our campaign please see
http://icppc.pl/pl/gmo/eng_index.php?id=eng_donate

ICPPC - International Coalition to Protect the Polish Countryside,
Międzynarodowa Koalicja dla Ochrony Polskiej Wsi
34-146 Stryszów 156, Poland tel./fax +48 33 8797114
biuro@icppc.pl
www.icppc.pl
www.gmo.icppc.pl
www.eko-cel.pl





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