Ukraine has urged the United Nations Security Council to take measures to demilitarize the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone and has called for a special U.N. mission to be sent there, Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said at a briefing on March 28.
“In the context of nuclear safety, the irresponsible and unprofessional actions of the Russian forces present a very serious threat not only to Ukraine, but also to hundreds of millions of Europeans,” Vereshchuk said.
“We therefore demand that the U.N. Security Council adopt immediate measures to demilitarize the Exclusion zone around the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant, and send a special U.N. mission to eliminate the risk of any repeat of the Chornobyl disaster resulting from actions of the invading Russian forces.”
She said that continued military activity in the Exclusion Zone and the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant by invading Russian forces poses a very serious risk of damage to the isolation facilities built over the plant’s fourth reactor, which was destroyed in an explosion and fire in 1986. Such damage will inevitably lead to the release into the atmosphere of a considerable amount of radioactive dust and contamination not only in Ukraine, but also in other European countries, she said.
On March 21, the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate announced that due to forest fires in the Chornobyl Zone and beyond, the level of radioactive air pollution had increased.
After that, Ukraine informed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) about forest fires near the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant.