International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has said that six nuclear reactors at Zaporizhzhia power plant, that came under Russian shelling, remains unaffected. No radiation rise was detected.
Russian forces shelled Europe’s largest nuclear plant, sparking a fire as they pressed their attack on a crucial energy-producing Ukrainian city and gained ground in their bid to cut off the country from the sea. (Photo: AP)
The United Nations’ atomic watchdog has said there has been no release of radiation at the Ukrainian nuclear plant that was targeted by the Russian military. Six nuclear reactors remain unaffected by the shelling.
The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, largest of its kind in Europe, was on fire early on Friday during intense fighting between Russian and Ukrainian troops.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director general Rafael Mariano Grossi said that the agency is in contact with the Ukrainian nuclear regulator and the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant after a building on the site was hit.
Grossi said two people on the site were injured in the fire. According to the plant operator and the regulator, the situation “continues to be extremely tense and challenging.” He said that only one reactor is operating at about 60%.
The director general also offered to travel to Chernobyl to negotiate with Ukraine and Russia to try and ensure security of all nuclear sites.
“Physical integrity of the [nuclear] plant has been compromised. It is time for action. Ukraine sent a request to us. This initiative has nothing to do with the political aspects of the crisis. Given the complicated circumstances on the ground, my presence is needed,” Grossi said.
Meanwhile, Ukraine President Zelenskyy said the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant disaster would be six times worse than Chornobyl. This night could have been the end of history for Ukraine and Europe, he said.
“Russian tank operators knew what they were shooting at, they directly targeted the station,” he added.
A report in The Times claimed that there have been at least three assassination attempts on President Zelensky over the past week since the Russian invasion. Two different outfits were reportedly sent to kill the Ukrainian president — mercenaries of the Kremlin-backed Wagner group and Chechen special forces. Both have been thwarted by anti-war elements within Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), the report said.
ALSO READ | Can Putin actually use nuclear bomb?