G7 Alliance Countries Urge Russia to Return Control of Nuclear Power Plants to Ukraine

G7 Alliance Countries Urge Russia to Return Control of Nuclear Power Plants to Ukraine
Leaders of the G7 Alliance Countries

International Military - Foreign ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) economic powers have called on Russia to immediately return the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant to Ukraine amid growing fears of a potential disaster.

Quoted from Al Jazeera, the statement issued by the G7 said: "Ukrainian personnel responsible for the operation of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant should be able to carry out their duties without threats or pressure, Russia's continued dominance of nuclear power plants endangers the region.

The plant, which is located near the southern city of Enerhodar and is the largest in Europe, has been fired upon several times and was partially damaged over the weekend. However, critical infrastructure is said to remain intact. Russia and Ukraine blame each other for the attack.

The allegations could not be independently verified. At Russia's initiative, the UN Security Council will address Thursday's shooting in New York. The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Grossi, will brief the council.

The G7 foreign ministers warned that Russia's actions significantly increased the risk of a nuclear incident and put the people of Ukraine, neighboring countries and the world at risk. They stressed the importance of allowing IAEA experts to be sent to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant to address issues and nuclear safety and security measures.

Al Jazeera's John Hendren, reporting from Kiev, said the head of Ukraine's state nuclear power company Energoatom told the Qatar-based news network that Russia wanted to disconnect the power plant from Ukraine's power system.

Separately, Kiev accused Russia of exploiting its position at a nuclear power plant to target the nearby city of Marhanets in a rocket attack that killed at least 13 people and left many others seriously injured. There was no immediate comment from Russia on Ukraine's accusations of the rocket attack on the Marhanets.

Moscow says it is not intentionally targeting civilians in what it calls a "special military operation" in Ukraine aimed at maintaining its own security. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's chief of staff, Andriy Yermak, accused Russia of launching attacks on Ukrainian cities with impunity from the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant knowing that Ukraine was at risk to resist.

Ukraine, which accuses Moscow of waging an unwarranted imperial-style war of aggression, said about 500 Russian troops with heavy vehicles and weapons were stationed at the plant, where Ukrainian technicians continue to work.

Russia says its forces are behaving responsibly and doing everything they can to ensure the safety of the facility. Moscow accuses Ukrainian troops of shelling the factory. Kiev denies the accusations.

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