Plea from Chernobyl Children International founder ‘in the name of humanity’
The woman who founded the Chernobyl Children’s Project has appealed to forces not to make the Radioactive Chernobyl Exclusion Zone a Zone of War.
Founder and voluntary CEO of Chernobyl Children International, Adi Roche was speaking following the invasion of Ukraine this week.
Hundreds of families across Ireland, including many in Derry, Tyrone and Donegal, have hosted children from the Chernobyl region in their homes since the nuclear plant disaster near the city of Pripyat in April 1986. There is a Foyle & Inishowen Chernobyl Children’s International branch locally.
Adi Roche said: “I appeal on behalf of all humanity, but mostly on behalf of the citizens of Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia, and indeed on behalf of the citizens of Europe, to the warring armies, under the Hague Conventions, that the highly contaminated area around the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station, with its thousands of tons and gallons of highly radioactive material, not be targeted, or used as areas of shelling, bombardment, and ground fighting.
“My worst nightmare in this conflict is that the tragedy of the Chernobyl disaster could be re-released on the world. I fear that this area, a sacred area, an area of utter vulnerability and danger, a special area of human tragedy, could once again, have deadly radioactive contamination released, which would spread everywhere, like a great and uncontrollable monster.
“The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone has vast silos of nuclear waste and water, which are highly dangerous and volatile. Along with hundreds of shallow ‘nuclear graves’, which are scattered throughout the Exclusion Zone, holding the contents of thousands of houses, machinery, buses and truck, all of which have been buried there to keep the radiation underground. Should a bomb, missile, a shot-down plane or helicopter crash into this area, the consequences could be disastrous.
“In the name of humanity, in the name of the children, please stop this war and declare the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone as a ‘Safe No War Zone.’”
Chernobyl Children International Foyle & Inishowen Outreach Group are an non profit organisation, run completely on a volunteer basis.
On its Facebook page is states; “Our aim is to help rebuild the lives of the people, and children, affected by the world’s worst nuclear disaster, which happened in Chernobyl, Ukraine in 1986. For those people living in the aftermath of the Chernobyl disaster, the on-going crisis will remain so for many years to come. We exist so we can try to help and relieve the pressures caused by the Chernobyl Disaster and to give HOPE to the children and their families that this disaster has affected. CCI and their outreach groups ensure that the people of Belarus and Ukraine do not have to face the consequences of this tragedy alone.
“We at Foyle & Inishowen CCI relentlessly fundraise to support on-going programmes, such as: Rest & Recuperation programme provides respite to impoverished children from the contaminated areas, in which they live, in Belarus; 4 weeks eating ‘clean’ food, drinking ‘clean’ water and breathing ‘clean’ air can extend a child’s life by 2 years, (‘clean’ is non-contaminated);
Cardiac programme provides life saving operations for children born with numerous holes in their heart, a condition known as ‘Chernobyl Heart’. At a cost of just €1,000 per operation its not much to save a child’s life.”
For much information about the charity’s work see: www.chernobyl-international.com/