IAEA visit to Zaporizhzhya nuclear plant to last four days – WSJ

29 August, 09:26 PM
Zaporizhzhya NPP (Photo:NAEK Energoatom)

Zaporizhzhya NPP (Photo:NAEK Energoatom)

The IAEA will begin a four-day mission to the Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) on Aug. 31, U.S. newspaper the Wall Street Journal reported on Aug. 29.

The newspaper said it had obtained a copy of an internal document of the Ukrainian government saying that the mission would start on Aug. 31 and last until Sept. 3.

The newspaper did not release any other details about the visit.

On Aug. 27, U.S. newspaper the New York Times reported that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) had formed a mission to visit the ZNPP.

Video of day

ZNPP was disconnected from the power grid for the first time in its history on Aug. 25 due to the actions of Russian invasion forces. However, the next day one of the plant’s six reactors was reconnected to the grid.

During an address on Aug. 25, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that the IAEA and other international organizations were not acting fast enough, and that every minute the Russian invaders stay at the ZNPP there is a risk of a radiation catastrophe.

The ZNPP is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, and has been occupied by Russian forces since March 4. Several ZNPP facilities have been damaged by Russian shelling, and the station’s employees are being held captive by the occupying troops.

The Kremlin uses the facility as cover for its forces, as Ukraine is unable to return fire due to the risk of causing a nuclear disaster.

Russian troops have set up firing positions at the ZNPP and are now shelling Ukrainian cities across the Dnipro River from there. Ukrainian state nuclear company Energoatom reported that invading Russian forces placed at least 14 units of heavy military vehicles with ammunition, weapons and explosives in the turbine hall of reactor No. 1 of the ZNPP.

On Aug. 22, the invaders brought additional armored personnel carriers and special trucks to the repair area of the station. In total, more than 40 units of Russian military vehicles are deployed on the territory of the station.

Ukrainian nuclear operator Energoatom warned on Aug. 19 that Russia is planning to disconnect the facility from Ukraine’s power grid, which would take the reactor cooling system offline.

The head of the Zaporizhzhya regional military administration, Oleksandr Starukh, on Aug. 16 called on the residents of the nearby town of Enerhodar to evacuate due to the shelling of the ZNPP. He said that in the event of an accident, about 400,000 people would have to be evacuated from two neighboring oblasts.

Kyiv has called on the IAEA and the UN to mount a monitoring mission to stabilize the situation at the ZNPP.

President Zelenskyy discussed the proposed UN and IAEA mission with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres during a meeting in Lviv on Aug. 18.

The UN says it is ready to support any IAEA mission from Kyiv to the ZNPP. According to news agency Bloomberg, the IAEA wants to visit the plant before Sept. 5.

Фото: NV

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