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Truck driver highjacks vanload of banned tomatoes after detention on border

August 06, 2015, 12:06 UTC+3 MOSCOW
When the driver realized the cargo was liable to destruction, he got back at the wheel, made a U-turn and drove back to Belarus
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© TASS/Valeriy Sharifulin

MOSCOW, August 6. /TASS/. On the border with Belarus the driver of a truck carrying a cargo of tomatoes prohibited from import into Russia made a U-turn and escaped to prevent the load from being destroyed, the spokesman for the agriculture watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor, Alexey Alekseyenko, has said on a Moscow radio station.

"There has already been a rather remarkable incident. A truckload of tomatoes was stopped. Obviously the original markings had been erased from the boxes. When the driver realized the cargo was liable to destruction, he got back at the wheel, made a U-turn and drove back to Belarus," Alexeyenko said.

Also, he quoted another incident in which several trucks carrying peaches were detained on the border.

"Those peaches ostensibly of Turkish origin had crossed Greece, Moldova and Belarus to eventually enter Russia. This is a rather strange route for a Turkish product. As far as I know, Turkey has not confirmed the authenticity of the certificates. The documents were forged," Alexeyenko said.

The Russian government earlier issued orders to the Federal Customs Service, agricultural watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor and consumer rights watchdog Rospotrebnadzor to destroy all products on the sanction list the moment they enter Russian territory. Under the government resolution the destruction of banned products is to begin as of today.

Agriculture Minister Aleksandr Tkachev came out with a proposal for taking measures to destroy on site the goods featuring on the sanction list at the president’s meeting with government ministers on July 24. President Vladimir Putin supported the idea.

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