He International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) alerted this Saturday that he is “Extremely worried” due to the tense situation in the nuclear power plant Ukrainian Zaporizhia, occupied by Russia since March 2022.
The UN nuclear agency explains in a report that its observers posted at the plant received information that the announced evacuation of the residents of the nearby city of Enerhodar – where most of the plant’s staff lives – has begun.
According to IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi, IAEA inspectors are closely monitoring the situation in case it could affect nuclear safety.
Specifically, he was deeply concerned about the increasingly tense, stressful and difficult conditions for employees at the plant, the largest in Europe.
IAEA experts on the ground continue to hear shelling regularly, including as late as Friday, Grossi said.
“The general situation in the area near the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant is increasingly unpredictable and potentially dangerous”warned the IAEA director.
“I am extremely concerned about the very real nuclear safety risks facing the plant. We must act now to prevent the threat of a serious nuclear accident and its consequences for the population and the environment.”Grossi said.
The IAEA director general has demanded from the beginning of the conflict the creation of a security zone around the plant to prevent a nuclear accident from occurring.
The Zaporizhia region is one of the areas where Ukraine could launch an offensive against the Russian occupation forces in the coming days and weeks.
The IAEA recalled today that the director of the plant, Yuri Chernichuk, has publicly stated that operating personnel are not being evacuated and that everything necessary is being done to guarantee nuclear safety at the plant, whose six reactors are in standby mode. stop.
Since the start of the Russian invasion, the plant’s staff has been gradually declining, although the plant’s management ensures that it is still sufficient for its safe operation.
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