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Tourists Banned from Chernobyl

29. September 2011 by Christy 0 Comments

If you've never visited Chernobyl's hot zone, you may never have the chance. Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office has suspended tours of the nuclear disaster site, citing corruption.

“Trips organized through tour operators to the exclusion zone have been stopped,” Ukraine's emergencies ministry, the organization responsible for overseeing the tour business, confirmed in a statement.

In February, the Ukrainian government officially opened the sealed area around the Chernobyl power plant, allowing adventurous tourists to (legally) visit the highly-contaminated area within a 30-mile radius of the destroyed nuclear reactor. Tourists paid approximately $100 to access the site, money which was supposed to help those affected by the disaster. However, according to officials at the Prosecutor General’s Office, the money is instead being funneled into the pockets of emergency ministry staff.

"We urge the ministry to inform the government of every dollar earned by these trips. We know that a lot of money has been made – but we have no idea in whose pockets it ended up," said Alexander Ampleev, a spokesman for Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office. “Why not put the money into the budget and use it to solve the zone’s problems?”

For its part, the ministry insists it has done nothing wrong and has sued to resume tours. According to, the court is expected to start hearings this month.


Sources: RT, Wanderlust