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Ukraine’s Chernobyl power plant in danger after capture by Russian troops, IAEA chief hints

Chernobyl (Ukraine). Nearly 36 years after the world’s worst nuclear disaster in Chernobyl, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency said on Tuesday that the danger of a nuclear power plant in Ukraine has increased significantly after Russian troops captured it. Standing outside the damaged plant holding his umbrella in the rain, agency director general Rafael Mariano Grossi said radiation levels were normal, but the situation was still not “stable”. Nuclear plant officials “have to be on alert.” Russian troops entered the Chernobyl exclusion zone in February as they marched toward the Ukrainian capital.

He left late last month in the wake of Russia’s withdrawal of its troops from areas around Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv. The Russian army is now turning its attention to eastern Ukraine. After the withdrawal of Russian forces, the area has been returned to Ukrainian occupation and disrupted communications have been restored. Ukrainian officials said the Russians who had occupied it for more than a month kept the plant’s workers there at gunpoint. During this the employees slept above the table and they were not even getting proper food.

Grossi also praised the staff for minimizing potential risks during occupation, including power disruptions. “I don’t know how close we are to disaster, but the situation is arguably unusual and very, very dangerous,” he said. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Twitter that not everyone can understand the danger of nuclear power. He said, “Russian actions in Ukraine’s nuclear power plants have posed a new threat to humanity.” Radioactive radiation was spread after an explosion in a nuclear reactor. The international community, including Russia, spent billions of dollars to normalize and make the situation in the region safe.

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