Thu. May 19th, 2022
169 Ukrainian National Guardsmen were locked in underground nuclear bunker by Russian forces that took over Chernobyl, report says
  • 169 Ukrainian soldiers at Chernobyl were put in an underground bunker for 30 days, CNN reported. 
  • Ukraine’s Interior Minister says Russian troops most likely took them to Russia when they withdrew. 
  • He told CNN that he’s unaware of what their fate was. 

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Close to 170 of Ukraine National Guard soldiers, who were guarding the Chernobyl nuclear plant were moved into an underground bunker by Russian forces, CNN reported. 

“They were kept here for 30 days without sufficient lighting and food. They were not allowed outside,” Denys Monastyrskyy, the Ukrainian Interior Minister said. 

The 169 servicemen were eventually taken away from the plant on the last day Russian occupying forces were there, Monastyrskyy said. He said they might have been taken to Russia, through Belarus as prisoners of war.

“Today we know nothing about their fate unfortunately,” he told CNN. 

The news follows multiple reports of Russian soldiers’ laissez-faire attitude at the nuclear plant since Russian forces took over, Insider previously reported. 

For instance, Russian troops drove armored vehicles through the ‘Red Forest,” Chernobyl’s most contaminated area without any protective gear when they invaded the site. 

—Defence of Ukraine (@DefenceU) April 6, 2022

Ukraine’s Department of Defense also said Russian troops dug into toxic soil and camped out in the forest. 

Monastyrskyy told CNN that Russian soldiers also ransacked the facility and the belongings of Ukrainian staff. 

“The Russian military went through all Ukrainian clothes, personal belongings, like dogs, in search of, probably, money, valuables, laptops,” Monastyrskyy continues. “There was looting here. The Russian military stole computers and equipment.”

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