Ukraine Says ‘Lax’ and ‘Careless’ Russian Soldiers Entered the Most Nuclear Contained Area on the Planet
“The sudden ear-piercing beep of a radiation meter fills the room,” reports CNN, “as a Ukrainian soldier walks in.

“This is where Russian soldiers were living at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, and radiation levels are now higher than normal.”

There’s no visible presence of the source of the radioactive material in the room, but Ukrainian officials say it’s coming from small particles and dust that the soldiers brought into the building. “They went to the Red Forest and brought radioactive material back with them on their shoes,” soldier Ihor Ugolkov explains. “Other places are fine, but radiation increased here, because they were living here.”

CNN was given exclusive access to the power plant for the first time since it came back into Ukrainian control. Officials at the plant explain the levels inside the room used by Russian soldiers are only slightly above what the World Nuclear Association describes as naturally occurring radiation. One-time contact would not be dangerous but continuous exposure would pose a health hazard.

“They went everywhere, and they also took some radioactive dust on them [when they left],” Ugolkov adds. It’s an example of what Ukrainian officials say was the lax and careless behavior of Russian soldiers while they were in control of the site of the 1986 nuclear disaster. The area around Chernobyl, namely the Red Forest, is still the most nuclear contaminated area on the planet, with most of the radioactive particles present on the soil….
Russian soldiers held Chernobyl for a month and are thought to have been operating in contaminated areas most of the time.

Russian soldiers entered the Red Forest and dug trenches, Ukranian officials believe — and on the edge of the area CNN spotted a Russian military ration box “that exhibited radiation levels 50 times above naturally occurring values.”

The 169 Ukraine National Guard soldiers, who guarded the facility, were locked in the plant’s Cold War era underground nuclear bunker, crammed up in tight quarters without access to natural light, fresh air or communication with the outside world, according to the Ukrainian Interior Minister.
“They were kept here for 30 days without sufficient lighting and food. They were not allowed outside. On the last day they were taken away from here to an unknown direction,” Denys Monastyrskyy says while standing inside the bunker.
The minister says he believes the men have been taken to Russia, via Belarus, as prisoners of war, but doesn’t know for certain.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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