War in Ukraine's east presents catastrophic environmental threat including nuclear pollution, - ecology minister

Armed conflict in the Donbas poses a threat of a serious environmental disaster including the nuclear aspect while the international community must focus on this.

As reported by Censor.NET, Ukraine's Minister for Ecology and Natural Resources Ostap Semerak told a correspondent for Ukrinform after a presentation of the results of the research of the impact of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine on the environment that took place on the sidelines of the 27th session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. 

"The world should know about the threats faced by Ukraine which also imperil the whole world, at least the European region," the minister said.

He called the fact that militants stopped pumping water out of many mines "an act of international environmental terrorism that the world should investigate properly." This especially applies to the Yunyi Komunar mine, which was used in the 1970s to conduct an underground nuclear explosion and where the products of its aftermath were "encapsulated."

"The countries that understand the nuclear threat should take a very active part in solving the environmental problems of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions," Semerak said.

According to him, there are 36 flooded mines in temporarily occupied territories of the Donbas. Ukraine and other countries will have to decide how to deal with them, with contaminated water objects, land affected by shelling, the use of explosive devices and aftermath of fires, and how to restore biodiversity in the region after the armed conflict is resolved.

The minister said that Ukraine cannot solve this problem on its own, neither financially, technically, or at the expert level. However, the official noted that everything would be done only after the fire is actually ceased.

Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n3075428