Russia and Ukraine called on the international community to pay attention to the safety of the Zaporizhzhia NPP.
The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has not yet eased, and the fate of a nuclear power plant is the first to sound the “nuclear alarm” to the international community.
According to Xinhua News Agency,Russia and Ukraine called on the international community on the 11th to pay attention to the safety of the Zaporizhzhia NPP. The Russian side expressed the hope that the international community and relevant international institutions will pay due attention to the current situation of the nuclear power plant at the UN Security Council meeting, and the Uzbek side called on the international expert group to inspect the safety of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant.
According to CCTV news reports, on the 13th, local officials in Zaporozhye said that Ukraine’s Ener Godar and Zaporozhye nuclear power plants were attacked again. He cited eyewitness sources as saying that explosions could be heard in the city and that shells were suspected to have landed along the Dnieper River and near the nuclear power plant.
The Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is located on the banks of the Kakhovka Reservoir on the Dnieper River in Ukraine. It is the largest nuclear power plant in Ukraine, with an annual power generation capacity of nearly 40 billion watts.According to the latest data from the International Atomic Energy Agency, Ukraine’s Zaporozhye nuclear power plant ranks tenth in the world in terms of the total installed capacity of a single unit.
Since the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict at the end of February, the area where the nuclear power plant is located has been under the control of the Russian side, and the nuclear power plant is working normally. However, since August 5, the area where the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is located has been shelled several times, and Russia and Ukraine have accused each other of the attack. As the lessons of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and the Fukushima nuclear accident come first, the safety of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant has attracted the attention of all parties.
In this regard, Jiang Tianjiao, an associate professor at the Development Research Institute of Fudan University, told Yicai.com,“First of all, the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is at the forefront of the current conflict between Russia and Ukraine, and the two sides are still fighting fiercely in the region. Once control changes hands, it will have an impact on the situation of the entire battlefield; secondly, the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe. One. If a serious nuclear safety accident occurs in the exchange of fire between the two sides, it will bring disastrous consequences to Ukraine and even the whole of Europe. Third, the international community has no precedent for dealing with nuclear power plant crises in armed conflicts, and it is urgent for all parties to Negotiate what works.”
Russia and Ukraine hold their own
How important is the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant to Ukraine’s economic development? According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Ukraine is very dependent on nuclear energy. There are 4 nuclear power plants and 15 operating nuclear reactors in Ukraine, which can provide more than 50% of Ukraine’s electricity. in,The six nuclear reactors owned by the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant provide Ukraine with more than 20 percent of its electricity. Therefore, once the operation of the nuclear power plant is interrupted, the power supply throughout Ukraine will be affected.
According to Xinhua News Agency, the representative of the Zaporozhye state government, Rogov, said on the 11th that the Ukrainian army used multiple rocket launchers and drones on the evening of the 10th to continue to attack the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant and the city of Ener Godar, where the nuclear power plant is located. All were repelled by the Russian air defense system, and the Russian army also successfully suppressed the firepower of the Ukrainian army.
On the 11th, the Ukrainian Atomic Energy Corporation (Energoatom) said that the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant was shelled five times that day, including near the repository of radioactive materials.
Nechayev, deputy director of the Information Department of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said on the 11th that Ukraine’s attack on the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant was an act of “nuclear terrorism”, and its possible disasters far exceeded the Chernobyl nuclear accident. Russia hopes that the international community and relevant international institutions will pay due attention to the current situation of nuclear power plants at the Security Council meeting.
On the same day, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba also said at a press conference that he sent letters to IAEA Director General Grossi and UN Secretary-General Guterres respectively on the 10th, calling on the IAEA and the United Nations to urgently Organize a joint expert team to inspect the safety of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant and assess the threat of militarization to the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant.
Proposed “demilitarized zone”
As Russia and Ukraine accuse each other of shelling the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant,United Nations Secretary-General Guterres suggested at an emergency meeting on the 11th that Europe’s largest nuclear power plant should be designated a “demilitarized zone” to avoid triggering a nuclear disaster. He called on both Russia and Ukraine to suspend all operations near the nuclear power plant.
Zhang Jun, China‘s permanent representative to the United Nations, chaired the Security Council’s review of the safety of Ukraine’s nuclear facilities on the 11th. In his speech, he said that China is highly concerned about the safety and security of nuclear facilities in Ukraine, and is deeply concerned about the recent attack on the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant.
Zhang Jun said that according to the information obtained by the International Atomic Energy Agency from the Ukrainian nuclear regulatory authority, the attack did not pose a direct threat to nuclear safety, and the radiation value was still at a normal level, but the attack affected the nuclear power plant’s facility integrity, safety and security systems, and power supply. It has caused damage to the safety of human beings and sounded the “nuclear alarm” to the international community.
Zhang Jun pointed out that there is no room for trial and error on the safety and security of nuclear facilities. The Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is one of the largest nuclear power plants in Europe. Once a large-scale nuclear accident occurs, it may be more serious than the Fukushima nuclear accident.The massive leakage of radioactive materials and nuclear-contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear accident have had far-reaching impacts on the marine environment, food safety and human health, causing widespread concern and concern. China does not want the same risk to repeat itself. We call on relevant parties to exercise restraint, act prudently, avoid actions that endanger nuclear safety and security, and make every effort to reduce the occurrence of accidents.
Jiang Tianjiao told Yicai that many countries and international organizations have expressed concerns about the situation of the Poirot nuclear power plant, “but if the two parties to the conflict cannot reach a consensus and give necessary cooperation, then the international community can only ‘stare’ on the sidelines. He emphasized that with the intensification of geopolitical games, international systems and rules in peacetime may face failure or abuse. “Many global security governance issues, including nuclear security, should follow the principle that human beings are indivisible security. The principle of community, adhere to genuine multilateralism and international legal norms, and strengthen the construction of a security governance system in extreme situations such as armed conflict.”
Restoring peace can fundamentally remove nuclear risks
Zhang Jun said that the Ukrainian crisis has lasted for more than five months, and the security risks posed by the conflict to nuclear facilities have always existed.Only by cooling down the situation and restoring peace at an early date can we fundamentally remove the nuclear risk, reduce misjudgments, and avoid accidents.We once again call on all parties concerned to resume negotiations as soon as possible, seek a solution to the Ukraine crisis with a calm and rational attitude, address each other’s legitimate security concerns, and build a balanced, effective and sustainable security architecture to achieve common security. China has always advocated abiding by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and respecting national sovereignty and territorial integrity. We call on all parties in the international community to push for a proper resolution of the crisis in a responsible manner, step up political and diplomatic efforts, and create conditions for the parties to resume negotiations. China will continue to play a constructive role in this regard.
At present, the Russia-Ukraine peace talks have been stalled for many months. The most recent negotiations date back to a meeting in Istanbul, Turkey, at the end of March.
When asked recently about Turkey’s proposal to mediate peace talks between Russia and Ukraine, the Russian side said that there is currently no “foundation” for a meeting between the leaders of Russia and Ukraine. Russian Presidential Press Secretary Peskov said that due to the “disappearance” of the Ukrainian delegation, the current Russian-Ukrainian negotiation process is at a standstill, and the two presidents do not have the conditions to meet.
Ukraine also holds the same argument. According to CCTV news reports, Podoljak, an adviser to the head of the Ukrainian presidential office, said in an interview with the media on the 13th that Ukraine has no intention to resume talks with Moscow because it means a victory for Russia. He emphasized that the current Ukrainian-Russian dialogue is limited to resolving the exchange of prisoners and the remains of the dead.