Ukraine: Radiation levels at Chernobyl within secure range, says IAEA
Ukraine: Radiation levels at Chernobyl within secure range, says IAEA

VIENNA: The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna announced that radiation levels at the exclusion zone of Ukraine's now-defunct Chernobyl nuclear power plant, which Russian forces had commanded for weeks before withdrawing in late March, have stayed within the safe range.

According to repots, IAEA Director-General Rafael Grossi led a mission to the facility earlier this week to transfer equipment, conduct radiation assessments, and reinstall safeguards monitoring systems, which was the site of the worst-ever nuclear disaster. Grossi told a press conference in Vienna on Thursday after returning from Ukraine that the IAEA had detected radiation levels in an area of the Chernobyl exclusion zone where Russian military had "probably" undertaken some excavation work.

The radiation exposure level in the excavation region, according to statistics provided by the IAEA chief, was 6.5 millisieverts per year, more than the 1.6 millisieverts at neighbouring roadways but much below the 20 millisieverts considered safe for employees in radiation-affected locations. "There was an increase in radiation levels," Grossi added, "but this rise is still substantially below the permissible threshold for workers in this type of setting." He also stated that the IAEA is still working to rebuild the Chernobyl safeguards monitoring equipment.

Grossi raised concern about the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power facility, Ukraine's largest nuclear power plant, which is still under Russian control, at a news conference on Thursday. "When it comes to the situation of the nuclear facilities in Ukraine, Zaporizhzhya is at the top of my list of concerns," he said, adding that he has been in talks with both Ukrainian and Russian authorities to secure the plant's safety.

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