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Ukrainian President Voldymyr Zelenskyy warned against the continued threat of a “radiation disaster” at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) as a U.N. team prepares to release a report on the station’s condition Tuesday.
Ukraine and Russia have both accused each other of targeting the plant in a barrage of shelling that has repeatedly caused some level of damage to the plant – most recently cutting the plant’s nuclear reactors off from Ukraine’s electrical grid for a second time Monday.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Grossi is expected to brief the U.N. Security Council Tuesday, following a fact-finding mission he led with a team of 13 other experts to review and analyze the condition of the plant last week.
Though it remains unclear if Grossi’s findings will identify which forces have been targeting the plant – a security threat that Ukrainian and European officials have warned could prompt a nuclear debacle greater than what the world saw during the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.
Russian soldiers have occupied the plant since early March, though Ukrainian technicians have continued to oversee the station’s operations.
Zelenskyy accused Russia of once again hitting the plant and said the timing of the strike was “provocative.”
“I consider the fact that Russia is doing this right now, right on the eve of the IAEA conclusions, very eloquent,” he said in a Monday night address to the nation. “Shelling the territory of the ZNPP means that the terrorist state does not care what the IAEA says, it does not care what the international community decides.”
Zelenskyy’s comments came just hours after Ukrainian ZNPP officials said the plant’s only remaining reactor had been disconnected from Ukraine’s electrical grid after a backup power line had to be cut while a fire was extinguished.
The reactor is expected to be reconnected to the grid once plant technicians can safely do so.
Fox News has not been able to independently verify Ukrainian or Russian accusations regarding the attacks on the plant.