Russians hiding real state of affairs at ZNPP, Energy Minister says

January 12,2024 6438
Russians hiding real state of affairs at ZNPP, Energy Minister says

The Russians are concealing the real state of affairs at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant. Currently, there is equipment degradation at the NPP, said the Minister of Energy of Ukraine, German Galushchenko, according to the Ukrinform news agency.

“Before the start of the major aggression, our nuclear generation operated with 15 power units, and for the first time in the history of the Zaporizhzhia NPP, it generated over 6000 megawatts. Currently, the situation is developing poorly. This is not only our observation but also that of IAEA experts who are present at the station. Recently, there was a statement from the IAEA that the Russians prevent inspectors from accessing the reactor halls, which means they [the Russians] are concealing the real state of affairs. We are aware of the actual situation, and it is referred to as equipment degradation,” said Galushchenko.

Since September 2023, ZNPP has been inactive within the system. To maintain the optimal performance of the station’s equipment, systematic efforts are needed. The Russians are not meeting the technical requirements essential for the proper functioning of the nuclear facility, resulting in the deterioration of the facility. The minister states, “Russians are living under the illusion of controlling the situation at the station.”

To make predictions about the future fate of the ZNPP, it is necessary to understand whether the station will be operational when Ukraine regains control, added Halushchenko. “Today, significant work is required to start the operation of even one unit at the station. The situation with Kakhovka [the blowing up of the Kakhovka HPP by the Russians in June 2023] also affects the operation of ZNPP. The situation is complex. Terrorists have already caused so much… The operation of the station itself is a tremendous effort for us.”

Experts from Rosatom are criminals from the standpoint of international law, says the minister. “We know the surnames of everyone from Rosatom who is there. These are circles of people in nuclear energy, they are former Soviet Union citizens, they all know each other, and studied together. So now they need to think about how they will live on. The illusion of control and the illusion that they are not involved in the crime. In fact, their presence at the nuclear facility and the actual control of it make them criminals not only from the perspective of Ukrainian law but also international law,” said Galushchenko.

Each of the involved Russians will bear responsibility for their actions, promises the minister. “They have the illusion that they control the situation at the station. Unfortunately, the situation is getting worse each day,” emphasized Galushchenko.

On January 1, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported that, for the first time, the Russians prohibited experts from inspecting the reactor halls of three power units at the ZNPP.

Cover: Alexander Ermochenko / Reuters

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