Statement by Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Chumakov at the IATF on Chernobyl
We appreciate the efforts of UNDP on the organization of this year’s session of the Inter-Agency Task Force, which traditionally provides a good opportunity to receive an update from the Member-States, particularly the Troika, and the United Nations, on the international activities in Chernobyl.
Our special thanks go to friends from the Republic of Belarus for their substantive contribution to the restoration of areas affected by Chernobyl disaster, as well as for relentless efforts to keep this issue on the UN radar. We are looking forward to support you in the preparation and facilitation of the next UNGA resolution on the matter, and call on all UN entities to take into account respective provisions in their work, as well as the decisions of international conferences on Chernobyl, referred to in these resolutions.
Russia remains actively engaged in the planning and implementation of international cooperation projects in Chernobyl, aimed on social and economic rehabilitation and development of the affected areas. We reiterate our support for the leadership role played by UNDP in this process and call on the Programme to further guide UN activities in the designated area.
Last year we provided extensive data on our contribution to the international cooperation on Chernobyl, I will not repeat these figures today. Just to reiterate that in more than three decades we participated in dozens of technical cooperation projects, including under UNDP leadership. Our contribution to ‘Shelter’ initiative totaled 55 mln. EUR.
As previously, our activities are guided by the Federal act of 1991, which has reconfirmed the commitment of the Russian Government to assist the affected populations, including the provision of social and medical support, as well as compensations for the damage of property.
This act is subject to periodic review, which is aimed to ensure that it’s up-to-date, needs-oriented and people-targeted. In support of its implementation, the Government undertakes dedicated federal programs, namely on the well-being of children, the provision of housing for Chernobyl’s liquidators and the restoration of the affected territories.
Major part of our international cooperation is carried out jointly with Belarus under the ‘umbrella’ of the Union State. Our joint efforts are particularly aimed at the provision of complex medical assistance to the affected populations through specialized medical centers, namely in Gomel, Obninsk and Saint-Petersburg. Total number of people assisted through the tree facilities is soon expected to exceed 4 thousand. We are fully determined to extend and expand this collaboration and invite others to consider joining these activities.
We look forward to hearing today’s update on Chernobyl and stand ready to provide further support to these important activities both through international mechanisms and under the auspices of the UNDP. Chernobyl catastrophe posed a great challenge to the region, and it still requires collective efforts to overcome all the consequences that emerged. Hence, constructive engagement of all players remains a key factor for achieving success in these endeavors. We stand ready to further contribute to this process, both through internal policies and through the development of meaningful cooperation with our neighbors.
I thank you.