Comment of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine on the 37th anniversary of the Chornobyl Disaster

On the anniversary of the accident at the Chornobyl NPP, we remember the terrible consequences of the largest man-made disaster of the 20th century and honor the memory of all those who died and rescue heroes who took part in liquidation of the consequences of the accident at the cost of their own lives and health.

The tragedy at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant actually exposed the criminal nature of the Soviet regime, which kept silent and tried to hide the true scale and consequences of the accident.

The Soviet campaign of disinformation and lies resulted in numerous human casualties and endangered the lives and health of millions of people around the world.

Through the consolidated efforts and interaction with the international donor community, it was possible to achieve significant success in overcoming the consequences of this unprecedented scale disaster for the sake of a safe future and sustainable development of humanity.

At the same time, the Russian Federation’s war of aggression against Ukraine created unprecedented threats to the radiation and nuclear security of Ukraine, Europe and the world.

Attacks on civil nuclear facilities in Ukraine have become one of the components of Russian aggression. For the first time in the history of mankind, an aggressor country resorted to forceful seizure of the Chornobyl nuclear power plant and Zaporizhzhia NPP (ZNPP), grossly violating international law.

Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, the largest in Europe, has been under occupation for over a year and is still used by the aggressor as a military base. Militarization of the ZNPP, attempts to illegally appropriate the plant and interference in the technological process, attacks and shelling of the plant by Russian invaders caused damage to the infrastructure and disrupted its proper functioning. The occupiers resort to repressions and cruel treatment of the Ukrainian staff of the plant, facts of kidnapping and torture are recorded.

The world must unite in countering the nuclear blackmail of the terrorist state to restore the fundamental principles of nuclear security and peaceful use of nuclear energy. Crimes committed by Russia at Ukrainian peaceful nuclear facilities and against the personnel of these facilities cannot and should not remain unpunished.

We count on increasing international pressure with the aim of liberating the occupied ZNPP as soon as possible and restoring Ukraine’s control over all peaceful nuclear facilities and material within the internationally recognized borders of our state.

We call on the international community to take uncompromising and decisive steps aimed at ensuring political, economic and legal consequences for the Russian Federation, including the expansion of sanctions against the Russian nuclear energy sector, as well as for the direct involvement of the state concern «Rosatom» in crimes at the ZNPP.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine