China to give Belarus $16 mn Chernobyl aid

Last Updated: Wed, Jan 09, 2013 20:08 hrs

Moscow: China is to donate some $16 million to Belarus to support children in areas hit by the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster, Belarusian government said Wednesday.

The money is to be spent on construction of recreational facilities equipped with swimming pools for children living in the districts contaminated by the world's worst nuclear accident at the Chernobyl nuclear plant, located just over the border in neighbouring Ukraine.

The radioactive fallout from the accident contaminated some 23 percent of Belarusian territory, an area of 45,000 km populated by 2.6 million. The radiation also affected an area of around 50,000 sq. km in Ukraine and 60,000 sq. km in Russia.

The accident is estimated to have caused thousands of premature deaths in the contaminated areas. Greenpeace claims it could eventually kill around 100,000, while an official UN report puts the toll at just 4,000.

More from Sify: