ERR in Kharkiv: Local nuclear sites under Russian fire

ERR correspondent Anton Aleksejev in a damaged building in Kharkiv.
ERR correspondent Anton Aleksejev in a damaged building in Kharkiv. Source: ERR

Nuclear sites, damage to which could cause radioactive fallout, are under fire in Kharkiv, in addition to residential buildings and civilian infrastructure, ERR correspondent Anton Aleksejev reports.

The Piatykhatky neighborhood in Kharkiv used to be home to around 20,000 people, mainly scientists, before the war. It is the location of the Department of Physical and Mathematical Sciences of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.

We are not allowed to film the center as it is a nuclear site. It is under constant fire, as are neighboring buildings.

"The shells falling right now are dangerous but not critically so. However, should the attacks intensify, for example, in the form of bombs thrown from aircraft, things would be much worse. Even a small amount of radioactive waste could cause a disaster," research fellow Sergei Afanesyev said.

The neighborhood seems dead, while there are some people still in the area. They simply do not dare to come out of basements in fear of the constant shelling.

"Where should I go? My parents are here. They are old and need to be looked after. We are given humanitarian aid three times a week. We have enough of everything. We have electricity, gas and water. Everything is great," Anatoli said, adding that he does not plan to leave.

"Everyone is helping each other. Volunteers are brining the elderly food. Some are evacuating people to the train station. People do what they can. There are far worse places than what we've got here. We can manage. While I'm used to much of it by now, my nerves are not made of steel," Sergei said.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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