New York, 22 September 2022 (TDI): Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Mariano Grossi met the Foreign Minister of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba on the sidelines of the 77th session of the UNGA.

They spoke about establishing a nuclear safety and security zone at Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) in Ukraine.

In the meeting, the Foreign Minister of Ukraine emphasized that Russia must withdraw its troops from ZNPP. He appealed to the international community to urge Russia to return the ZNPP under the control of Ukraine.

Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant

The ZNPP is situated at Enherhodar and has been under the control of the Russian military. However, the Ukrainian staff still runs its technical operations.

In the earlier weeks of September, the city of Enherhodar faced a power blackout which affected the power plant’s operations. This blackout happened due to the continuous shelling at its thermal power plant.

In the wake of this power blackout, the ZNPP was powered by a nuclear reactor. This nuclear reactor was then shut down to avoid any accidents.

Also read: Power restored at Zaporizhzhya NPP: IAEA 

IAEA condemned this continuous shelling at the ZNPP. Director General Rafael Grossi also urged the international community to call for the end the Russian aggression threatening global peace and security. The international community had given a positive response to this call.

Global response to ZNPP Situation

The Foreign Ministers from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and Ukraine gave a statement against the shelling at ZNPP. Senior officials from the Republic of Korea, Switzerland, and the United States of America also joined them.

They reiterated the importance of reinforcing the international framework for protecting nuclear facilities. Their statement highlighted the importance of complying with international humanitarian law.

Their statement concluded, “In due time, we are also ready to review the lessons learned in Ukraine to help the IAEA and the international community prepare for and respond to future events and anticipate new threats.”