Investigation into illegal construction in Lithuania’s regional parks launched

The Green Lakes
DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

A report by Lrytas.lt says that members of the committee visited these parks and personally witnessed potential violations: newly constructed buildings, the cutting of state forests, and land illegally closed off.

“If those are regional parks, the prosecutor should identify why so many construction permits are being issued. For larger and smaller structures. To defend the public interest, the prosecutor’s office should see if there haven’t been any violations,” Social Democrat Algimantas Salamakinas, the chairman of the Committee on Environmental Protection, told BNS.

He also said that, on Wednesday, the committee intends to decide that any illegal structures, including fences or gates, must be destroyed and any illegally occupied state lands must be returned.

Salamakinas said that the representatives of the committee who visited the parks found luxurious homes worth 2, 3 or even 5 million Euros. “The strangest thing was that we didn’t really find any regular people who could’ve built homes there. Only very wealthy people live there. This raises further doubts about whether everything there is legal,” he said.

He also said that he had been shocked by the behaviour of some people he encountered on those territories.

“When we went to the Gulbinai recreational area, a former pioneer camp, a security guard came and started yelling at us: ‘stop taking photos.’ What is this that I can’t photograph it, a military site? He said, ‘The owner forbids it.’ I said, ‘I don’t want to approach the private homes, and there are 14 of them. I’ll go through the state forest.’ Of course, they said we could not.”

Salamakinas said that when he spoke with the property’s owner on the phone and threatened to call the police, the owner threatened to fire his security guards in retaliation.

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