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Drone struck dome of reactor at Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, with casualties

Drone struck dome of reactor at Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, with casualties A drone struck the dome of the reactor at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has reported an attack by an unidentified unmanned aerial vehicle on the territory and one of the protective domes of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP). The Russians blamed the Defense Forces for the attacks, but the General Staff rejects the occupiers' accusations, accoring to Reuters and the IAEA.

Reuters reported that the Russian corporation Rosatom accused the Ukrainian Armed Forces of allegedly three drone attacks on the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP).

The corporation stated that the first attack targeted an area near the canteen, injuring three employees. However, Rosatom did not specify the type of weapon used in the strike.

Subsequently, for half an hour, a drone attacked the cargo loading area, and then another drone hit the dome of the sixth reactor.

According to Rosatom, three people were injured as a result of the UAV attacks, with one of them sustaining serious injuries. Russian officials and the IAEA reported that radiation levels at the plant were normal, and there were no serious damages to the reactor containment.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova called on world leaders to condemn the act as nuclear terrorism.

At the same time, Ukraine's HUR Main Intelligence Directorate, Andriy Usov denied any involvement of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the incident. He stated that Ukraine had nothing to do with the attacks and suggested that it was the work of the Russians themselves.

IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi stated on his social media page that the Agency and the International Support and Assistance Mission for the Agency in Zaporizhzhia (ISAMZ) confirmed at least three direct hits on the main structure of the reactor containment at the nuclear power plant and called it unacceptable.

The IAEA noted that on April 7, a drone detonated on the plant's premises. Observers present at the NPP confirmed this fact.

"I urge to refrain from actions that contradict the 5 IAEA principles and jeopardise nuclear safety," the agency said, referring to Grossi's statement.

Situation at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant

The Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant has six VVER-1000 V-320 reactors of Soviet design with water cooling and water moderator, containing uranium-235, as well as spent nuclear fuel on-site. As of today, reactors No. 1, 2, 5, and 6 are in cold shutdown, reactor No. 3 is shut down for maintenance, and reactor No. 4 is in a state of so-called hot shutdown.

The Russians seized the plant on March 4, 2022, along with the satellite city of Energodar. Since then, the NPP has been in a zone of combat operations and has been repeatedly disconnected from the power grid due to hostilities.

For example, on April 4, due to Russian artillery shelling, the external air line PL-330kV Zaporizhzhia TPP - Ferroalloy was disconnected. Through it, the Zaporizhzhia NPP received power from the Ukrainian energy system to meet its own needs.

The IAEA noted that the disconnection occurred after a series of artillery salvos in the area of the station.

On April 6, the station was successfully connected to the second power line.

Earlier, the IAEA noted that the occupants were shelling Ukraine from the territory of the Zaporizhzhia NPP.