VIDEO shows Russian and Ukrainian troops guarding Chernobyl plant together
Russian paratroopers are keeping watch over the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant along with the Ukrainian National Guard, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Saturday as it published a video supposedly showing soldiers from both forces guarding the premises.
The Russian forces “reached an agreement” with the nuclear power plant guard battalion of the Ukrainian National Guard, the ministry’s press service said in a statement. Both nations’ soldiers are currently providing security at the power plant’s units, spent fuel storehouses, and the protective dome built over the sarcophagus of the destroyed fourth reactor, it added.
The two-minute video released by the ministry shows the area around the power plant and people armed with assault rifles. The footage also shows two men in military uniform, one with a Ukrainian flag on his arm, discussing the security cameras and motion detectors in the area.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the power plant staff is working as normal, and the nuclear environment at the site remains safe. The video also shows people who appear to be power plant employees and military personnel measuring the radiation levels.
One man who appears to be a Russian serviceman is heard in the video saying that the nuclear environment is being monitored six times a day and that the situation remains under control.
The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant was the site of the worst nuclear catastrophe in history in 1986, when its fourth reactor went into meltdown. A gigantic steel sarcophagus, which took years to construct, now covers the dilapidated structure around the crippled reactor, which will remain radioactive for years to come.
Russian forces took control of the area, located in the north of Ukraine not far from the border with Belarus, on Thursday after President Vladimir Putin launched a military operation in Ukraine.
The Ukrainian nuclear agency and Interior Ministry claimed on Friday that there were increased radiation levels from the site of the defunct power plant. Reuters reported that the increase might have been caused by radioactive dust in the area that rose due to heavy equipment moving through the area.