23 March 2012

Divers clear explosives from Macedonia lake

Ohrid lake - Macedonia.
Special teams of divers have cleared some four tonnes of explosives from Lake Ohrid in southwestern Macedonia, a protected UNESCO World Heritage site, the MIA news agency said Thursday."There were unexploded mines, bombs and different munitions for the Balkans wars in the 1900s, World War I and World War II... that posed a potential danger to the population," the interior ministry said in a statement quoted by MIA.The 358-square-kilometre (138-square-mile) lake is the deepest in the Balkans at 288 metres (945 feet). It straddles the border between Macedonia and Albania and has a unique ecosystem with more than 200 endemic species.According to Ekrem Zendeli, an environmental protection official, some 23,000 square metres of the lake have been cleared of explosives since the start of the operation in 2007.Over the years around 20 tonnes of explosives had been taken from the lake, Macedonia's main tourist attraction.

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