Disasters Judgment at Chernobyl

Six defendants go on trial for causing a nuclear catastrophe

Camera shutters clicked and high-intensity television lights flooded a makeshift courtroom last week in Chernobyl, the Ukrainian town whose name has been forever emblazoned in the pantheon of nuclear disaster. In the blinding glare, dozens of photographers zeroed in on six haggard-looking men seated in the defendants' box. Thus began the trial of the once obscure former plant officials and technicians charged with primary responsibility for history's + worst nuclear accident. The April 26, 1986, mishap, in which the No. 4 reactor at the Chernobyl power station exploded and burned out of control, killed 31 people, forced 135,000 to be evacuated...

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