You are here

Lithuanian interior minister slams Vilnius officials over Belarus nuclear drill

Lithuanian Interior Minister Eimutis Misiūnas  /​

Lithuanian Interior Minister Eimutis Misiūnas has reacted to the plans of the Vilnius city authorities to hold exercises simulating the accident at the Belarusian nuclear power plant. During the drills scheduled for September 5, partial evacuation of residents is planned.

"They seem to frighten the residents of Vilnius, sowing panic, although in fact there is no theoretical basis to do so," Delfi quotes the Interior Minister as saying. Misiūnas noted that Vilnius is not in the 30 km zone around the nuclear power plant, from which the evacuation of local residents is envisaged in the event of an accident. He spoke of a "lack of competence" on the part of Vilnius officials, or of potential "ulterior motives".

Eimutis Misiūnas has stressed that the exercises planned by the capital's authorities were not coordinated with either the Interior Ministry or rescuers. By the way, the Fire Protection Department has planned a training exercise for October to protect the population in the event of an accident at a nuclear power plant. The Vilnius authorities explain their actions by the fact that, in their opinion, the central authorities of Lithuania are passively preparing for the commissioning of the Belarusian NPP. They believe that in the worst case scenario about 500 thousand people will have to be evacuated from Vilnius.