Live Updates: Russia’s War in Ukraine

The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant on October 29. (Carl Court/Getty Images)

Powerful explosions rocked the area of ​​Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant on Saturday evening and Sunday morning, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The statement describes the explosions as “abruptly ending a period of relative calm at the facility and further underscoring the urgent need for measures to help prevent a nuclear accident there.”

IAEA experts at the plant reported that more than a dozen explosions were heard in a short time Sunday morning local time “in what appears to be further bombardment near and at the site of the largest nuclear power plant in Europe,” the IAEA said. .

The IAEA team was also able to see some of the explosions from their windows, the agency said.

“The news from our team yesterday and this morning is extremely worrying. Explosions have occurred at the site of this important nuclear power plant, which is completely unacceptable. Whoever is behind this, this needs to stop immediately. As I have said many times before, you are playing with fire,” IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi said in the statement.

Based on information provided by plant management, the IAEA team said that some buildings, systems and equipment at the plant site had been damaged, “but none of them were up to ‘now critical to nuclear safety and security,’ the IAEA said.

No casualties have been reported and IAEA experts are in “close contact” with site management about the situation on the ground, the IAEA said.

Grossi “renewed his urgent appeal to both parties to the conflict to agree and implement a nuclear safety and security zone around the ZNPP as soon as possible,” according to the statement, which adds that Grossi in recent months “has engaged in ‘intense consultations with Ukraine and Russia on the establishment of such a zone, but so far without agreement.’

“I won’t give up until this area becomes a reality. As the apparent bombings underway demonstrate, they are needed more than ever,” Grossi said in the statement.


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