Conflicts & War

Ukraine nuclear power plant under Russian control partially repaired

Vienna, Mar 20 (EFE).- Ukraine has repaired one of the three previously disconnected power lines linking the Zaporizhzhya nuclear plant to the electricity grid, the United Nations atomic watchdog said, days after the Russian forces took it under their control.

The facility has four high voltage (750 kV) external power lines plus one on standby. It had lost connection to three of them after the Russian forces took control of one of the largest nuclear power plants in the world located in southeastern Ukraine on Mar.4.

The Ukrainian regulator informed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that it reconnected one on Mar.18.

The nuclear power plant now has three off-site lines available, the country’s regulatory authority told the IAEA.

“The regulator reiterated that the NPP’s safety systems were fully functional. It was not known when the two other non-operational lines could be reconnected,” the IAEA said on Saturday.

Two of the six reactors of the power plant are operating.

In an official note to the UN agency on Saturday on the “current situation of the safety of Ukrainian nuclear facilities”, Russia claimed that at the Zaporizhzhya, “the rotation of personnel is carried out in a regular mode” and that “there are no problems with spare parts.”

It also said that “explosive objects…on the territory” of the NPP after events on Mar.4 “were eliminated.”

The Ukrainian national regulator said the Chernobyl plant remained connected to the power grid after engineers on Mar.14 restored supplies lost for five days.

Russian forces took control of the site on Feb.24, the same day when they invaded Ukraine.

In a note to the IAEA, Russia said that since Mar.14, “the situation with the power supply of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant is completely stabilized.”

The Ukrainian regulator said eight of the country’s 15 reactors remained functional, including the two at the Zaporizhzhya NPP, three at Rivne, one at Khmelnytskyy, and two at south Ukraine.

The radiation levels at all NPPs were normal, and safety systems were operating, said the watchdog.

Concerning safeguards, the agency said the situation remained unchanged as it was still not receiving a remote data transmission from its monitoring systems installed at Chernobyl.

IAEA Director-General Grossi said he continued his consultations on a framework on the safety and security of Ukraine’s nuclear facilities.

“With this framework in place, the agency would be able to provide effective technical assistance for the safe and secure operation of these facilities,” he said. EFE


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