Ukrainians on Sunday marked 29 years since the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, placing wreaths and candles near the plant where work to lay a new seal over the reactor site has been delayed.

The explosion of reactor number four on April 26, 1986, spewed poisonous radiation over large parts of Europe, particularly Ukraine, Belarus and Russia.

At 1:23 am (2223 GMT Saturday), the exact time of the explosion, hundreds of people placed flowers and candles in the dark at the foot of a monument in Slavutych, a town 50 kilometres (30 miles) from the plant.

Slavutych was built to rehouse Chernobyl workers who had lived near the plant and were forced to move further away after the disaster.

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