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All seven nuclear safety and security pillars have been compromised at ZNPP, IAEA report says

The IAEA has published a report on the situation at the Zaporizhzhia NPP. The report calls for immediate steps to prevent a radiation accident which may result from the power plant being damaged by military actions. At the same time, based on the available data, the IAEA staff saw no signs of radioactive contamination spreading from the plant. The report goes on to say that the IAEA is still gravely concerned about the situation at the ZNPP because the seven indispensable nuclear safety and security pillars have all been compromised at the site. Therefore, the IAEA has made recommendations against each of the seven pillars.

The experts note that during the period of Russian presence, Ukrainian staff continued to manage day-to-day operations at the Chornobyl NPP site. For nearly four weeks, staff were not able to rotate and return to their homes which increased the risk of human error. Ukrainian staff operating the plant under Russian military occupation are under constant high stress and pressure, especially with the limited staff available. At the same time the management and staff members assured the IAEA that staffing was sufficient to perform normal operational functions at the main control room with a regular eight-hour shift change process still being applied despite the shortage of licensed staff.

The IAEA team observed the presence of Russian military personnel, vehicles and equipment at various places at the ZNPP, including several military trucks on the ground floor of the Unit 1 and Unit 2 turbine halls and military vehicles stationed under the overpass connecting the reactor units. The IAEA called for the removal of vehicles from areas that could interfere with the operation of safety and security systems and equipment.

Pending the end of the conflict and re-establishment of stable conditions there is an urgent need for interim measures to prevent a nuclear accident arising from physical damage caused by military means. This can be achieved by the immediate establishment of a nuclear safety and security protection zone. The IAEA is ready to start immediately the consultations leading to the urgent establishment of such a nuclear safety and security protection zone at the ZNPP, report says.

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