November 17, 2019 - The importance of protecting the Sinjajevina Mountain was discussed yesterday at the UNESCO main building in Paris - Doctor of Anthropology and Professor at the University of Toulouse Pablo Dominguez presented the case at the headquarters of the Biosphere Reserve.
He will do the same early next week in Brussels. He will explain European parliamentarians that Sinajevina, where the Montenegrin Ministry of Defense planned to form an exercise range, present the part of the already protected Tara biosphere. Aleksandar Milatovic, from the Citizens' Initiative Let's Save Sinajevina and an activist of the Coalition for Sustainable Development (KOR), told Vijesti.
Dominguez is a world-renowned scientist who has been exploring the connection between humans and the Mediterranean nature for years.
Milatovic said a KOR adviser in Paris talked about what he saw during a scientific study of Sinjajevina.
"Dominguez, whose advice we have been listening to for months and who helps us preserve Sinjajevina, was yesterday in Paris ours and the voice of all herdsmen from Sinjajevina, as well as those who sip teas on the mountain and enjoy the untouched nature. He told UNESCO experts that the site where the military training ground is planned falls under one of the reserves that are already protected- the biosphere of the Tara River Canyon. He explained to them the impact of a possible military exercise field on the living world, talked about the role of local communities, the traditional way of life, and what he had been studying for years - nomadic livestock."
Dominguez also talked about the earlier intentions to declare Sinajevina as a nature park, but also that he discovered with fellow scientists while researching the socio-ecological jewel of Europe that, contrary to the recommendations, the Montenegrin Government decided to use this space as a military training ground.
Domingos emphasized that the Government of Montenegro plans to build a military training ground "in the heart of populated pastures and within UNESCO's biosphere reserve, without publicly available environmental and health impact assessment, without an available economic impact study and substantive negotiations with affected pastoral communities, rejecting the petition Civic Initiative Let's Save Sinjajevina."
"Government officials have qualified those fighting for the preservation of the Sinjajevina region as state enemies or anti-government propagandists," Dominguez said in Paris, according to a report in which Vijesti had insight.
Dominguez was invited to speak at the beginning of next week about what he saw in Montenegro and Brussels - first before the Parliamentary Committee on Stabilization and Association and then before the European Commission or their Directorate for Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement.
"In addition to Sinjajevina, there will be talking about the problems of construction of small hydropower plants, Durmitor, Skadar Lake, destroyed Tara, polluted air in several Montenegrin municipalities. We have no other mechanism to deal with those who are destroying Montenegro's natural resources and protecting the ecological state, except to inform the European Commission directly what is happening here, which we are doing now. It is fortunate that our advisor, Dominguez, is truly a scientist who does not have to go anywhere for his opinion like most of the 'experts' here, but will talk about what he came up with and what he saw. And he saw what all the well-intentioned people saw was that natural resources were being destroyed because of investors' interests," Milatovic said.
The KOR activist referred to the opinions of experts on the devastation of nature throughout Montenegro, included in the Draft Report for Chapter 27 - Environmental Protection and Climate Change, for the period November 2018 to October 2019, which was submitted to Members of the European Parliament and to which European Parliamentarians can act in the future.
"This is entirely expected because it reflects the real situation. We hope that after hearing Dominguez and our friends from the European Greens, they will set an ultimatum for Montenegro - to stop destroying nature. "