Chernobyl is back under Ukraine control after Russians forces formally give up the nuclear site.
The Ukrainian state nuclear company said on Thursday most of the Russian forces that occupied the Chernobyl nuclear power station after invading Ukraine have left the defunct plant, and suggested radiation concerns had driven them away.
Though Russian troops seized control of Chernobyl soon after the Feb. 24 invasion, the plant’s Ukrainian staff continued to oversee the safe storage of spent nuclear fuel and supervise the concrete-encased remains of the reactor that exploded in 1986, causing the world’s worst nuclear accident.
State-owned Energoatom said these workers had flagged earlier on Thursday that Russian forces were planning to leave the territory.
“The information is confirmed that the occupiers, who seized the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and other facilities in the exclusion zone, have set off in two columns towards the Ukrainian border with the Republic of Belarus,” it said in a statement.
It said a small number of Russian troops remained at Chernobyl, but did not specify how many. Russian forces have also retreated from the nearby town of Slavutych, where workers at Chernobyl live, it said.
In a separate online post, Energoatom said the Russian side had formally agreed to hand back to Ukraine the responsibility for protecting Chernobyl.
Meanwhile, lots of Russian forces were burned by Ukrainian forces today, March 31.
It was also gathered that Russian military vehicles were also set ablaze in Kyiv Oblast today.