UN nuclear chief to focus on proposing safety measures around nuclear plant

UN nuclear chief to focus on proposing safety measures around nuclear plant
Опубликовано: Friday, 31 March 2023 08:04

The head of the UN nuclear watchdog visited Ukraine’s embattled Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant on Wednesday (29 March) and said he was putting aside plans for a security zone around the facility so he could propose specific protection measures acceptable to both Moscow and Kyiv.

Rafael Grossi, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, had been pushing for a demilitarised zone at the Russian-held power station, Europe’s largest nuclear facility, which has come under repeated shelling.

Grossi, who visited the plant for the second time in less than seven months on Wednesday, told Russian reporters that the situation was not improving. A recording of the briefing was made available.

The IAEA head did not name specific safety measures that could be proposed. Russia said in February that it was close to completing construction of protective structures for key parts of Zaporizhzhia, including storage of radioactive materials.

Russian troops seized the facility more than a year ago at the start of the war. Ukraine and Russia have repeatedly accused each other of shelling the plant.

Grossi said he shifted the emphasis of his efforts to enacting specific protection measures acceptable to both sides.

"I think what is important is to make sure there are no attacks. I am trying to put on the table realistic, viable proposals that can be accepted by all," he said.

Grossi said it was no secret there had been a significant increase in the number of troops in the region.

Advertisement

"It is obvious that military activity is increasing in this whole region. So the plant can’t be protected," he said.

On Tuesday Grossi said he was pressing on with efforts to find a solution.

"I am not giving up in any way. I think on the contrary we need to multiply our efforts, we need to continue," he said.

Grossi on Monday met Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who has consistently accused Russia of staging attacks in and around the plant as part of "nuclear blackmail".

The sprawling Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant was a prized part of Ukraine’s energy network and accounted for around 20% of national power generation before the Russian invasion.

It has not produced any electricity since September, when the last of its six reactors was taken offline.

The IAEA has had monitors stationed at the plant since September, when Grossi travelled to the facility as fears of a potential nuclear accident mounted.

Share this article:

Related items

arrowread...
‘No violence or intimidation’ can block Ukraine’s NATO path

Saturday, 13 April 2024 05:06

Speaking at the NATO Open Door

arrowread...
Stalemate is no strategy: NATO faces the new reality

Friday, 05 April 2024 13:13

As the band marched past NATO f

arrowread...
Mogadishu and Bamako. Ukrainian forces broaden its horizons in Africa

Monday, 01 April 2024 06:04

A recent broadcast of French TV

arrowread...
Russia Fires Barrage of North Korean Missiles at Kyiv After US Visit

Thursday, 21 March 2024 23:07

In the early hours of Thursday, Ukraine’s c