Moscow welcomes the planned trip of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southeastern Ukraine, which is occupied by Russian forces, a Russian diplomat has said. state communication.
Russia’s permanent representative to international organizations in Vienna, Mikhail Ulyanov, said that Russia understood that the IAEA would leave some representatives at the plant on a permanent basis, state media outlet RIA Novosti reported.
“As far as we understand, the general manager intends to leave some people at the station regularly,” Ulyanov said, according to RIA.
Mr. Ulyanov added that the mission included “about a dozen staff members of the secretariat of the agency dealing with nuclear safety and security issues” as well as a large group of UN staff dealing with post-processing. need and security. RIA reported.
“Russia has made a significant contribution to the preparation of this mission. We hope that the visit to the plant by the IAEA delegation will dispel many speculations about the unfavorable operational situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. “, added Mr. Ulyanov.
What’s happening? Earlier on Monday, the head of the IAEA, Rafael Mariano Grossi, tweeted that the delegation would visit Zaporizhzhia – home to Europe’s largest nuclear facility – “by the end of this week”.
The Kremlin said on Monday that the IAEA mission would enter the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant from the Ukrainian side, but that Russia would ensure their safety in the territory occupied by the Russian military.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists in a regular conference call that as far as the territory controlled by Russia is concerned, security will be provided to the appropriate extent necessary.
“[The mission] will enter [nuclear plant] territory from the area controlled by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. There, the Ukrainians will ensure security,” Peskov added.
When asked about the possibility of creating a demilitarized zone around the plant, Peskov said it was “not discussed”.
Peskov added that Russia welcomes the long-awaited IAEA mission.
“We have been waiting for this mission for a long time. We consider it necessary,” Peskov said.