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Maria Pleshkova

In Memory of Chernobyl

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On April 26, 1986, a nuclear accident occurred at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine. An explosion and fire in the Reactor number 4 released large quantities of radioactive contamination into the atmosphere. It is considered the worst nuclear plant accident in history. 
Forests and agricultural lands near Chernobyl are still radiation contaminated. Many towns and villages are empty as the locals were evacuated. But the worst thing is the disaster's effects on human health. Health problems linked with the Chernobyl disaster include cancer, mutations, long term genetic defects, chromosomal aberrations, Down syndrome ? People remain largely unsure of what the effects of radiation actually are and retain a sense of foreboding. Disadvantaged children around Chernobyl suffer from health problems that are attributable not only to the Chernobyl accident, but also to the poor state of post-Soviet health systems. 
I photographed the Chernobyl's exclusion zone and the Ukrainian National Chernobyl Museum. 
With this series I pay tribute to the Chernobyl disaster victims and remind of the fragility of human life.