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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Statement

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the 28th Anniversary of the Chernobyl Disaster

New York , 25 April 2014

Tomorrow we will mark the 28th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. This is an opportunity to pay tribute to the emergency workers who responded, remember the more than 330,000 people who were evacuated from contaminated regions, and stand in solidarity with the millions who still live in the affected areas in Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine.

The United Nations has played an important role in addressing the challenges faced by affected communities, and we remain fully committed to the UN Action Plan on Chernobyl until 2016. Those affected still require targeted yet comprehensive support in creating new livelihoods and restoring self-reliance and self-sufficiency. The Secretary-General applauds the determination of people in affected territories to bring life in the region back to normal.

The Secretary-General welcomes the resolution on Chernobyl adopted by the General Assembly, which requested continued recovery efforts and called for the consideration of further approaches to international cooperation after 2016. Toward that end, the Secretary-General welcomes the meeting next month in Belarus of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Chernobyl as the beginning of a substantive discussion on the future conceptual framework of international Chernobyl cooperation.

The Secretary-General notes that Chernobyl recovery has produced new knowledge and experience in addressing the multifaceted consequences of nuclear emergencies. Over the years, the United Nations and its partners have tackled development challenges that emerged in the aftermath of the nuclear disaster, supported recovery efforts tailored to addressing the fallout, and found practical solutions on the ground. The Secretary-General welcomes the request of the General Assembly to fully utilize those experiences in development cooperation worldwide.

On this solemn occasion, the Secretary-General calls upon the international community to further support the process of recovery and sustainable development in the Chernobyl-affected region, to optimize the knowledge gained for the common good, and to do everything possible to prevent any future nuclear disasters.

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Statements on 25 April 2014