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Haunting photos of Chernobyl disaster released nearly 30 years on

The catastrophic nuclear disaster occurred on 26th April 1986 at Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Pripyat, Ukraine, which at the time was under Soviet control.

It killed 31 people initially, although thousands more are estimated to have died as a result of exposure to radiation.

It also cost the Soviet Union around $18 billion at the time, almost bankrupting the regime.

Now, nearly thirty years on, Reuters photographer Gleb Garanich visited the site of the disaster and captured incredible photos of an abandoned town, frozen in time.

A cross with a crucifix in the deserted town of Pripyat. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
A doll in a children's gas mask sits next to children's cots in a kindergarten in Pripyat. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
Dodgems and a ferris wheel seen in an abandoned theme park in Pripyat near Chernobyl. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
The town of Pripyat as seen from an abandoned, crumbling building. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
A portrait in a house in the abandoned village of Zalesye near the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
The coat of arms of the former Soviet Union is seen on the roof of a house in the abandoned city of Pripyat. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
A picture of Soviet state founder Vladimir Lenin, in a kindergarten in Pripyat. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
An abandoned amusement park ride in the town of Pripyat near the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
A doll among the cots at a kindergarten in Pripyat. Credit: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich