Source Pravda.Ru

Ukraine to boost anti-radiation program

Ukraine's government announced Thursday that it would increase funding bymore than $80 million annually over the next three years to alleviate thehuman consequences of the Chernobyl nuclear tragedy. Total funding for theprogram is expected to reach $657 million by 2006, up from $400 million,the level reached this year, said Vasyl Lutsko, State Secretary of theEmergency Situations Ministry.The government says that at least 3.3 million people, including 1.5 millionchildren, suffer health consequences resulting from the accident. Doctorsand public health officials link a sharp rise in thyroid cancer -especially among children - to Chernobyl and tens of thousands of peopledisabled by other Chernobyl-related illnesses receive inadequate healthcare.Chernobyl was the site of world's worst nuclear disaster on April 26, 1986,when a reactor there exploded and caught fire, sending a radioactive cloudover vast areas of Ukraine, Russia and Belarus and much of northern Europe,the Russia Journal reported..

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