IAEA mission to Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant arrives in Zaporizhzhia

31 August, 03:58 PM
IAEA mission to ZNPP arrives in Zaporizhzhia (Photo:REUTERS/Gleb Garanich)

IAEA mission to ZNPP arrives in Zaporizhzhia (Photo:REUTERS/Gleb Garanich)

An International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) mission that aims to visit the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in Enerhodar arrived in Zaporizhzhia on Aug. 31, the Reuters news agency reported the same day.

A mission of 14 experts headed by IAEA chief Rafael Grossi will attempt to travel to the Russian-occupied territories from Zaporizhzhia, and inspect Europe’s largest nuclear power plant – reportedly damaged by Russian shelling. 

Ukrainian nuclear energy operator Energoatom has also confirmed the mission’s arrival to Ukraine’s southern stronghold in a statement on Telegram messenger.  Russian media reported that the occupiers expect the mission to arrive at the plant on Sept. 1.

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The IAEA team arrived in Kyiv on Aug. 30, where they met with Ukrainian officials.

World leaders began discussing the possible visit of the IAEA mission to the occupied nuclear power plant at the beginning of August, when Russian provocations and shelling of the ZNPP became more frequent. 

The United Nations declared its readiness to facilitate the visit of IAEA inspectors to Zaporizhzhia from Kyiv, but Russia insisted that the mission should not go through Kyiv.

Finally, on Aug. 19, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, in a conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron, promised to allow the UN mission to the Zaporizhzhia NPP "on the conditions that were discussed."

On Aug. 23, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Sergey Lavrov, in a conversation with the head of the Foreign Ministry of France, confirmed the consent of the Russian Federation to the mission of the IAEA to the ZNPP.

Three days later it became known that the IAEA is preparing an emergency visit to the ZNPP. IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi said he would head the mission.

Фото: NV

Before that, Grossi held talks with Ukrainian diplomats in Vienna, Russian officials and Rosatom representatives in Istanbul and French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris to discuss preparations. 

"The presence of the IAEA will help stabilize the nuclear safety situation at the site and reduce the risk of a serious nuclear accident in Europe," Grossi believes.

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