Fears of a nuclear catastrophe are growing after Russian troops began shelling the Ukrainian town where workers at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant live
Russian shelling has reportedly sparked wildfires in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.
It is believed that 10 hectares of forest around the Chernobyl site is now on fire and cannot be extinguished by Ukrainian authorities as it is under Russian control.
Officials fear the fire could sweep through the forest and destroy the nuclear power plant.
Ukrainian politician Inna Sovsun has revealed that a large part of the forest around the former nuclear reactor is on fire.
She tweeted: “10 hectares of forest burn in Chernobyl zone caused by #Russian Bombardment. It is not possible to put out the fire now as this area is not controlled by #Ukraine. We are afraid that the fire will reach the nuclear power plant. Radiation levels are already elevated.”
The site contains nuclear fuel storage facilities and nuclear waste dumps, which if burned could result in a nuclear disaster, authorities warned.
The fires could intensify depending on the weather – for widespread fires this is possible if conditions become windy and dry.
Ukrainian authorities announced earlier today that Russian forces fired rockets at a nuclear research facility in Kharkiv – which remains under siege.
And fears of a nuclear catastrophe in Chernobyl itself are growing after Russian troops bombed the town where the plant’s employees live.
There are concerns that Russian shelling of Ukrainian checkpoints in the town of Slavutych, home to Chernobyl nuclear workers, is preventing workers from entering and exiting the plant.
And the bombing comes just days after Ukrainian workers who were being held non-rotationally by Russian forces for almost four weeks to maintain the nuclear power plant were finally able to return to their homes in Slavutych.
Employees working at Chernobyl have been held at gunpoint since Russia seized the site on the first day of the February 24 invasion.
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https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/breaking-chernobyl-radiation-fears-forest-26567792 Chernobyl radiation fears as 25-acre wildfire burns on nuclear plant - World News