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The Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Grossi, has expressed his willingness to “continue consultations” with Ukraine and Russia to ensure safety at the Zaporiyia nuclear power plant and “avoid a nuclear accident” due to the fighting in the area.
“We must do everything possible to avoid a nuclear accident that would add tragedy to suffering. We have to act. If something happens here, we will not be able to blame a natural disaster, but will have to recognize our own inaction,” he said, before reiterating his call for the creation of a safety zone around the plant, the largest in Europe.
Thus, he has confirmed the start of “detailed talks” with Kiev and Moscow to reach an agreement on this zone and stressed that “it is known what needs to be done.” “It is possible. I am ready to continue consultations this week with both countries so that we can protect this plant,” he explained.
Grossi said that “from day one, the IAEA has kept the world informed about the unprecedented situation” in the country and recalled that four IAEA missions have traveled to the country to date, including one in the face of several incidents at the Chernobyl plant.
“The IAEA has a permanent presence on site,” Grossi has indicated regarding the situation in Zaporiyia, while saying that this allows the agency “to interact directly with the Ukrainian operator to see the situation first hand and to assess and help find ways to stabilize it.”
The Zaporiyia power plant is the largest in Europe and has six reactors commissioned between 1984 and 1995. It has been controlled by Russian forces since March of this year, shortly after the Russian invasion of Ukraine began.