Russia conducts illegal construction at Zaporizhzhia NPP

27 October 2022, 10:12 PM
Since March 4, the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, Zaporizhzhya NPP, has been seized by Russian occupants (Photo:REUTERS/Alexander Ermochenko)

Since March 4, the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, Zaporizhzhya NPP, has been seized by Russian occupants (Photo:REUTERS/Alexander Ermochenko)

Russian forces are carrying out illegal construction at the occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, acting head of Ukraine’s State Atomic Energy Regulatory Commission, Oleh Korikov, said during a press briefing on Oct. 27.

According to Korikov, unauthorized construction work is being carried out near the nuclear waste storage area.

“We turned to the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency), their mission is currently working at the ZNPP,” said Korikov.

“We are having a discussion with colleagues from the IAEA (to get more information about the construction).”

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When commenting on Russian claims about Kyiv developing a “dirty bomb,” Korikov said that Ukraine informs the IAEA about its nuclear material and intentions regarding it, as well as about the technology used in radiation-hazardous installations. He stressed that Ukraine is open to IAEA visits, including unannounced ones.

“The IAEA has already made a statement and refuted these (Russian) allegations,” Korikov added.

“...Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi published a statement that two Ukrainian facilities (mentioned by Russia) are subject to annual IAEA inspections and are under IAEA safeguards. The last inspection was a month ago; no activity was found that was not previously reported, thus disproving the claim.”

He also reminded that Ukraine invited IAEA inspectors to further examine all its nuclear facilities. The monitoring mission is expected to arrive in the near future.

The Zaporizhzhia NPP 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 captives of the occupying troops.

Russian troops have set up firing positions at the territory of the ZNPP and are shelling Ukrainian cities from there. Energoatom reported that the Russian military placed at least 14 units of heavy military vehicles, loaded with ammunition, weapons and explosives in one of the turbine halls at ZNPP.

IAEA has since established a permanent monitoring presence at the facility.

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