‘Ukraine Near Nuclear Disaster’

Thursday, August 18, 2022 | Tag Cloud Tags: , , ,

By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent

MOSCOW/KYIV (Worthy News) – The leaders of wartorn , , and the United Nations met to discuss rising tensions at Europe’s largest nuclear plant and to review a grain export deal signed by Kyiv and Moscow.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said the talks aimed to prevent the dangers of “another Chornobyl” in Ukraine, referencing the world’s worst nuclear disaster.

Scientists with the Ukrainian Hydrometeorology Institute already simulated the radiation spread of a nuclear disaster at the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.

They found that with the weather conditions of the past few days, radioactive contaminants could reach as far north as the Baltic Sea, hitting Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland along the way, as well as Belarus.

Heading west, radioactive contaminants could enter Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic.

Yet shelling around the site continues, Ukrainian and Russian officials say. And, Ukrainian staff at the Zaporizhzhia plant has been intimidated by ’s military, several sources said.

RUSSIA THREATENS MILITARY

Russia has warned it may shut down the station if Ukraine continues to shell the facility – a claim Kyiv has denied.

Kyiv’s military intelligence believes Russia plans a “provocation” at the nuclear power plant on Friday by announcing a “day off” and closing entry to all other employees.

The U.N. secretary general, António Guterres, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky agreed on a possible mission led by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Guterres also told Zelensky of a U.N. fact-finding mission to Olenivka in Donetsk to investigate allegations of Russian mistreatment of Ukrainian prisoners of war.

And Erdoğan signed a memorandum with Ukraine to help reconstruct infrastructure destroyed by the war. “While continuing our efforts to find a solution, we remain on the side of our Ukraine friends,” he said.

Yet, as they spoke, at least 15 people were reportedly killed in a series of Russian missile strikes on the Ukrainian city on the city of Kharkiv Wednesday and early Thursday.

‘NO JUSTIFICATION’

Zelensky called the attack a “devious and cynical strike on civilians with no justification.” He said: “We will not forgive; we will take revenge.”

Separately, at least 12 Russians were reportedly killed in a strike on a base in the occupied city of Nova Kakhovka, according to the Ukrainian military. Footage posted on social media by the state border guard service showed numerous burnt-out trucks, collapsed buildings, and debris.

Elsewhere, the mayor of the village of Verkhnyo Rogachytsk in the Russian-occupied Kherson region has been kidnapped, according to the deputy chair of the regional council. Yuri Sobolevsky said Svitlana Ivanivna was taken from her home at about 11 am on Tuesday.

Despite these setbacks, Ukraine has not lost any U.S.-supplied Himars rocket launchers, the Ukrainian defense minister, Oleksii Reznikov, said in contradiction to Russian claims.

Ukraine has received at least 20 U.S.-made launchers and reportedly used them to attack Russian ammunition depots, command posts, and air defenses, Kyiv claims.

Though there were no signs that the war in Ukraine would end soon as U.N. food aid for Africa reached the Bosphorus Strait on Wednesday.

Under a U.N.-backed deal to restore Ukrainian grain deliveries across the Black Sea, the MV Brave Commander took its cargo of 23,000 tonnes of wheat.

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