Ukraine says Russian troops completely withdraw from Chernobyl

Ukraine says Russian troops completely withdraw from Chernobyl

Ukraine’s state atomic energy company says all Russian troops controlling the Chernobyl power plant have withdrawn from the area.

“When they fled from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, the Russian military brought with them members of the Ukrainian National Guard. These people have been held hostage by Russia since February 24,” Energoatom company quoted employees at the factory, according to AFP on March 31.

Earlier on the same day, Energoatom announced that “there are no outsiders on the area around the Chernobyl nuclear plant”. Russian troops also withdrew from the nearby town of Slavutych, where the Chernobyl staff lived.

The Chernobyl nuclear power plant is located 130 km north of Kyiv. It has been shut down since the reactor explosion disaster in 1986 but still has staff to ensure radioactive waste does not leak.

After the Chernobyl plant fell into Russian hands on February 24, many parties expressed concern about the risk of a safety incident.

It is not clear how many Ukrainian soldiers are being taken with Russia. Russian authorities have not commented on the move to withdraw troops from Chernobyl as well as Energoatom’s allegations.

Earlier this week, employees at Chernobyl told Reuters that Russian soldiers drove through the most radioactively contaminated area at Chernobyl without protection, thereby creating a fallout cloud.

Energoatom said that due to concerns about radiation, “almost a riot began to simmer among Russian soldiers” here. This may explain Russia’s sudden withdrawal.

On the same day, March 31, President Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed that Russian troops continued to leave northern Ukraine, but according to him, this was a tactical withdrawal.

“To the north of the capital Kyiv, in the direction of Chernihiv and in the Sumy province, the Russian army continued to withdraw. They themselves know that they can no longer keep the frequency of attacks like in the first half of March,” he said.

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.