Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky talks about Russia and nuclear weapons. Rafael Mariano Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), during a joint news conference in Kyiv on Tuesday criticized the recent actions of Russian troops at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant.
“Today, on the 36th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster, once again the world was just one step away from catastrophe because for the Russian military, the plant and the whole was another war action zone where they did not care about nuclear safety.” Zelensky said.
Zelensky accused Russian troops of doing little to address the nuclear threat and looting and damaging many areas of the plant, including the system control center and laboratory.
The Chernobyl nuclear power plant in northern Ukraine was captured by Russian forces a few weeks ago and is now back under Ukrainian control.
He warned that their indifference indicates the danger of Russia’s use of nuclear weapons.
“Given the level of threat, we believe that Russia has no right to turn nuclear energy into weapons and to blackmail the world with the use of nuclear weapons,” Zelensky said.
During the news conference, Zelensky personally thanked the staff members who were present to take care of the plant during the occupation by Russian troops. The staff was presented with medals for their work.
Zelensky and Grossi discussed the current level of nuclear threat and the damage to facilities.
Grossi said he agreed that the IAEA would continue to work to restore the destroyed capacity and infrastructure in recent weeks.
“Despite these difficulties, it is important to look to the future, to look for peace, at a time when Ukraine will have its peace, its tranquility, and the security that all its citizens deserve,” Grossi said.
Grossi paid a working visit to the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on the occasion of the Chernobyl Disaster Memorial Day, 36 years after an explosion. Territories, as the United Nations explains.
The United Nations says about 8.4 million people in the three countries have been exposed to radiation.
The head of the IAEA said of the visit: “We are celebrating this day. We are remembering what needs to be remembered. We are honoring and respecting those who deserve it. But we are working.
Grossi said that during the working visit, the IAEA provided the first batch of equipment, including radiation monitoring equipment. IAEA safety inspectors are working with their Ukrainian counterparts to monitor and compare radiation measurements at the plant and discharge zone and then maintain a “as long as the situation requires” presence, the letter said. Speaking to reporters at the scene, Grossi added.
When asked by a reporter how close Chernobyl was to another catastrophe during the Russian occupation, Grossi said that the situation was “completely different” from the 1986 explosion at the then-working nuclear reactor. “It simply came to our notice then.
The head of the IAEA said that all credit goes to the operators for avoiding bad luck.
“I think the credit operators should go first. For these people here, because they continued their work despite all the difficulties. Despite the stress, despite the fact that they are not able to work normally, ” They said