Russia starts a campaign to destroy illegally imported Western food banned under restrictions imposed in retaliation for Western sanctions -- but not all Muscovites agree with the move. Gavino Garay reports.
The decision by senior Russian officials to destroy seven tones of illegally imported cheese is part of Moscow's ban on many Western foods. The anti-Western food campaign began last year ... as retaliation against sanctions imposed on Moscow by the EU and its allies over the conflict in eastern Ukraine. On the streets of Moscow, some residents say destroying good food is just plain wasteful. (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) MOSCOW RESIDENT, ALEXANDER, SAYING: "I believe it is possible to find a better use for food rather than just burn it." (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) MOSCOW RESIDENT, RUSTAM, SAYING: "It would be better to use it as humanitarian aid, to collect it and send it to those who need food." But others cal it an act of patriotism. (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) MOSCOW RESIDENT, EKATERINA, SAYING: "I think it would be better if we try to live with our own food and produce everything here in our country." But plans for the mass destruction of banned Western food imports have angered many here. This, in country with soaring poverty rates and the cost of food increasing at 20 percent a year. Over a quarter of a million people around the world have backed an online petition calling on Russian President Vladimir Putin to revoke the decision and hand the food to people in need.