Western leaders react to Ukraine nuclear plant incident — Analysis
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has informed the US and UK leaders of an incident at the country’s largest nuclear facility, accusing Russian forces of shelling, causing a fire and triggering fears of a meltdown.
The White House confirmedAccording to President Joe Biden, he had spoken with his Ukrainian counterpart on Thursday night. He noted that he received updates on the Zaporozhskaya Nuclear Power Plant situation following the fire. Biden also spoke with the US National Nuclear Security Administration (an agency within the Energy Department).
As President Zelenskyy, he urged Russia to stop its military operations in the region and permit firefighters and other emergency personnel to reach the site.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) March 4, 2022
Jennifer Granholm from the US, Secretary of Energy, is in between. said she spoke with Ukraine’s energy minister about the Zaporozhskaya facility, stating that “Russian military operations near the plant are reckless and must cease.”
“[The Department of Energy]has activated the Nuclear Incident Response Team. It is closely monitoring developments in consultation with [the Pentagon], [the Nuclear Regulatory Commission] and the White House,”However, she added that “no elevated radiation readings”No reactors were found near the plant. “protected by robust containment structures and… are being safely shut down.”
According to Downing Street, Boris Johnson, the UK Prime Minister had an identical discussion with Zelensky.
“Both leaders agreed that Russia must immediately cease its attack on the power station and allow unfettered access for emergency services to the plant,”The call was read out, the PM adding that the incident might “directly threaten the safety of all of Europe.”
Ukraine’s State Emergency Service earlier issued an update on Telegram stating that the blaze had actually erupted in a “training building” adjacent to the nuclear site, not the facility’s reactor buildings. It was stated that firefighters initially were unable to respond to the fire because of ongoing strikes. However, eventually they were able to put out the flames.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) – the United Nations nuclear watchdog – confirmedThere is no “essential equipment”Had been destroyed at the plant. saidIt has happened. “no change reported in radiation levels,”Citing Ukrainian officials
Kiev had previously claimed that Russian munitions were targeting the facility. Dmytro Kuleba, Ukrainian Foreign Minister accusingMoscow to Launch Strikes “from all sides”Warning of a devastating meltdown
“If [the plant]It will explode 10 times faster than Chernobyl Russians must IMMEDIATELY cease the fire, allow firefighters, establish a security zone!”He tweeted the following.
Russia told the IAEA earlier this week that it had captured Zaporozhskaya’s area, although it wasn’t clear at the time if it actually had control over the plant. According to Ukrainian officials, Russian forces have pushed through the defences at Enerhodar in order to advance on the nuclear site.
Moscow sent troops into Ukraine this week. “demilitarize” “denazify”The government of Kiev to stop what was being called “genocide”Donetsk (the breakaway region) and Lugansk (the rest). The US and NATO have followed suit by accusing Russia of unprovoked attacks. The West has since imposed a wave of sanctions in retaliation and approved a flurry of weapons shipments to Ukraine’s armed forces.