Venezuela rejects Brazil accusations over beach oil spills

Venezuela rejects Brazil accusations over beach oil spills

Oil spill on a beach in Pirambu, Sergipe state, Brazil
Oil spill on a beach in Pirambu, Sergipe state, Brazil. (AFP/HO)

CARACAS: Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA on Thursday (Oct 10) denied accusations by Brazil that it was responsible for a massive oil spill that has polluted beaches on its northeastern Atlantic coast.

Brazil's Environment Minister Ricardo Salles told a congressional commission on Wednesday that the oil "probably came from Venezuela," citing a report from Brazilian state oil company Petrobas.

PDVSA said in a statement it "categorically" rejected Salles' "unfounded" claims, adding that there was "no evidence of oil spills in Venezuela's oil fields that could have caused damage to the marine ecosystem" of the neighbouring country.

Biologists treating a turtle after an oil spill
Biologists at a marine mammal rehabilitation centre in Ceara State, Brazil, treating a turtle covered in oil. (AFP/Andressa GOMIDE)

The oil began appearing in early September and has been seen along a 2,000-kilometre stretch of the northeastern Atlantic coast - with around 130 tons of oil residue collected by Monday.

Petrobas, which is taking part in the clean-up, said the oil "was neither produced nor sold" by the company after analyzing local samples last week.

Source: AFP/de

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