As a result of a debt dating back to 2013 and now reaching up to 400,000 euros, the bank accounts of the agency responsible for managing a huge environmentally sensitive area in northern Greece have been frozen, leaving the protected wetland without expert oversight and scientific monitoring.
The area in question comprises Nestos River, Vistonida and Ismarida lakes, and a part of the island of Thassos.
The underlying cause of the problem is the Environment Ministry’s inability to cover the amount awarded by a court to employees of the management body in 2013.
Due to accumulated interest, the amount has quadrupled, also leading to the freezing of the accounts of the management body. Funds from European programs have also been divested.
As a result of this financial deadlock, the agency ran out of money to pay employees or cover basic utility bills in June.