BLOOMBERG – Poland’s Internal Security Service is investigating whether an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in Rzeszow may have been an act of sabotage, given that Rzeszow is a NATO hub for supplies to Ukraine.
7 dead, 113 hospitalized due to lung disease in RzeszowAccording to the local government. Stanislaw Zaryn, a spokesman for Poland’s security services, announced on X that the purpose of the investigation was to rule out any external actions that could have contributed to the outbreak, corroborating information from RMF radio.
Rzeszow, about 100 kilometers from the Ukrainian border, has become a gateway for Western humanitarian aid and military supplies since Russia began its invasion 18 months ago.
The city of about 200,000 is home to U.S. soldiers and Patriot air defense systems, and is a transit hub for many officials traveling to Kiev, including U.S. President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Manuel Macron.
The head of the regional government, Ewa Leniat, told RMF that the local government is conducting tests and hopes to find out the origin of the outbreak on Monday. The infection was most likely caused by the water supply system and the situation is now under controlhe claimed.
According to the World Health Organization, Legionnaires’ disease, a form of pneumonia caused by Legionella bacteria, kills an average of 5%-10% of cases. People get sick when they inhale droplets or swallow water that contains bacteria.
In 2021, there will be around 10,700 cases of the disease in the European Union, with 704 known deaths, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control.
As the war dragged on, fears of possible hostile activity by the Kremlin grew. Polish authorities have arrested at least 15 people this year accused of spying for Russia. In March, the Interior Ministry said the suspects intended to block the delivery of equipment, weapons and aid to Ukraine.
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