Ukraine’s nuclear power plant, Europe’s largest, was set on fire after a Russian-led attack

A rescue car is seen on the spot after a bomb attack by the Russian military, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, in Chernihiv, Ukraine, on March 3, 2022 on this still image taken from a video on social media. State Emergency Services in Ukraine / through REUTERS

March 4, 2022

BORODYANKA / LVIV, Ukraine (Reuters) – Europe’s largest nuclear power plant is on fire following Russia’s attack, Ukraine’s foreign minister said on Friday, calling for security zones and firefighters to deal with the incident.

A production unit at the plant has been attacked by Russian troops and part of the plant is on fire, the RIA news agency quoted the Ukrainian nuclear ministry as saying on Friday.

A spokesman for the plant told RIA that the background levels of radiation had not changed.

“The Russian military is firing on all sides of the Zaporizhzhia NPP, Europe’s largest nuclear power plant,” Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba wrote on Twitter.

“Fire has already started … Russia must IMMEDIATELY stop the fire, allow firefighters to enter a security zone!

Heavy fighting has erupted in the area about 550 kilometers (342 miles) southeast of Kyiv, the mayor of the nearby town of Energodar said in an online post. He said there had been casualties, without giving further details.

Russia has already captured a disused Chernobyl plant, about 100 km north of the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a statement that it was “aware of reports of gunfire” at the power plant and was in contact with the Ukrainian authorities about the situation.

Earlier, Ukrainian authorities said Russian troops were intensifying their efforts to reach the plant and had entered the town with tanks.

“As a result of the constant firing of enemies on the buildings and units of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is on fire,” Orlov said on his Telegram channel, citing what he called a threat to world security. He did not provide information about it.

Reuters could not immediately verify the information, including the possible severity of the fire.

As the largest attack on a European country since the outbreak of World War II on the ninth day, it is estimated that thousands have died or been injured, 1 million refugees have fled Ukraine and Russia’s economy has been devastated by international sanctions.

On Thursday, the United States and Britain announced sanctions against more Russian oligarchs, following EU action, which increased pressure on the Kremlin.

Sanctions have “already had a big impact,” said US President Joe Biden.

Russia calls its operations in Ukraine a “special operation” designed not to occupy territory but to destroy the military capabilities of its neighbors and capture what they see as dangerous nationalists. It denies having shot at civilians.

(Reports by Pavel Polityuk, Natalia Zinets, Aleksandar Vasovic in Ukraine, David Ljunggren in Ottawa and other Reuters offices; Writing by Costas Pitas; Editing by Rosalba O’Brien and Stephen Coates)

Ukraine’s nuclear power plant, Europe’s largest, was set on fire after a Russian-led attack

Source link Ukraine’s nuclear power plant, Europe’s largest, was set on fire after a Russian-led attack

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