Russia isn’t done playing with fire at Ukraine’s nuclear plants?

A drone attack on Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia power plant has raised the risk of a „major nuclear accident”, says the UN’s atomic watchdog.

Zaporizhzhia has been held by Russia since 2022.

The facility stopped generating power in 2022, but needs a constant supply of electricity to cool one of its reactors which is in a state of „hot conservation”, meaning it is not fully offline.

The giant Russian-held nuclear plant, with six reactors, is on the frontline of the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the largest of its kind in Europe.

The UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has repeatedly warned against such attacks, says the BBC.

IAEA chief Rafael Grossi said Sunday’s drone strike was „reckless” and „a major escalation of the nuclear safety and security dangers” facing the plant.

The IAEA, which has a team of experts at Zaporizhzhia, confirmed „physical impact of drone attacks” at the plant, including at one of the reactors.

The plant’s Russian-installed administration said radiation levels were normal and that there was no serious damage.

The IAEA said the damage had not compromised nuclear safety, but it warned that „this is a serious incident with potential to undermine [the] integrity of the reactor’s containment system”.

Grossi specified there had been „at least three direct hits” against the plant’s „main reactor containment structures”.

Last month the IAEA said its team of experts at the plant had heard explosions every day for a week.

Blame has been passed like a hot potato: Russia said Ukraine was behind the attack, which it said injured three people. Ukraine has denied involvement.

Both Russia and Ukraine regularly accuse each other of shelling the plant and risking a serious nuclear accident.

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