El factor Chernobyl en la crisis de Ucrania

LOS ANGELES – Veintiocho años después de que estallara su planta nuclear de Chernobyl, Ucrania enfrenta otro tipo de espectro nuclear: la posibilidad de que los reactores del país se conviertan en blancos militares en caso de una invasión rusa. Al hablar en la Cumbre de Seguridad Nuclear en La Haya en marzo, Andrii Deshchytsia, el ministro interino de Relaciones Exteriores de Ucrania, citó la "potencial amenaza para muchas instalaciones nucleares" si los acontecimientos se deterioran al punto de desatar una guerra abierta.

A principios de este mes, Ihor Prokopchuk, el embajador de Ucrania ante la Agencia Internacional de Energía Atómica, hizo circular una carta a la junta de gobernadores de la organización advirtiendo que una invasión podría generar una "amenaza de contaminación por radiación en el territorio de Ucrania y el territorio de los estados vecinos". En Kyiv, la respuesta del parlamento de Ucrania fue instar a los monitores internacionales a ayudar a proteger las plantas mientras el gobierno, falto de efectivo, intenta impulsar sus propios esfuerzos.

¿Las preocupaciones de Ucrania son una simple hipérbole -una "calumnia maliciosa", como lo define el Kremlin- o deberíamos tomarlas en serio? Para el gobierno de Ucrania, la angustia es real. Hasta los ucranianos nacidos después de 1986 pueden imaginarse cómo sería un desastre como el de Chernobyl si tuviera lugar una contienda armada.

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