After the departure of Russian troops, the Ukrainian flag was hoisted above the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, the state company in charge of nuclear power plants announced on Saturday. Amid the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war, Energoatom, a nuclear energy company in Ukraine, announced in a statement on Telegram: “Today, April 2, at 11:00 a.m., the Ukrainian flag was hoisted over the power plant Chernobyl nuclear attack and the anthem was sung,” CNN reported.
The statement read: “The entire staff of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, who worked heroically under the difficult conditions of the occupation since February 24 and ensured the nuclear and radiological security of the plant and nearby facilities, were present at the ceremony.
The statement came after a senior US defense official claimed on March 30 that some Russian troops had left the Chernobyl nuclear power plant site, CNN reported. Chernobyl, which lies about 60 miles northwest of kyiv, witnessed the world’s worst nuclear disaster.
Russian troops seized the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on February 24
According to the media, Russian soldiers seized the factory which still contains radioactive waste on February 24, the first day of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Additionally, the pullout came a day after Russia claimed the country would reduce activities in two Ukrainian cities, according to Newsweek.
A US source said Chernobyl is where Russia is repositioning some of its troops, “leaving, moving away from the Chernobyl facility and moving into Belarus,” The Kyiv Independent reported.
“Chernobyl is (one) area where they are starting to reposition some of their troops – leaving, moving away from the Chernobyl facility and moving into Belarus,” the official said.
— Kyiv Independent (@KyivIndependent) March 30, 2022
In addition to this, Rafael Mariano Grossi, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), announced on Friday that he will lead an assistance and support operation at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant “as soon as possible” in the next few days to ensure the safety of the factory.
Grossi had arrived in Vienna on Friday after a three-day trip to Ukraine and Russia, according to the Wall Street Journal. In addition, the head of the IAEA visited officials from both countries to review the safety of Ukrainian nuclear power plants.
— Rafael Mariano Grossi (@rafaelmgrossi) April 1, 2022
It came after the IAEA said on Thursday that Ukraine had informed the agency that Russian personnel commanding the Chernobyl nuclear power plant were leaving and handing over control to Ukrainian forces. Grossi also told a news conference on Friday that he did not tell Russian officials why the Russian workers left Chernobyl. According to Grossi, the IAEA has yet to verify claims that Russian servicemen were exposed to radiation at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant.