The Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant – Europe’s largest CREDIT: REUTERS/ALEXANDER ERMOCHENKO
25 AUGUST 2022 • 12:03PM
Russian tanks can be seen just 60 metres from Europe’s largest nuclear reactor in new satellite images released by the Ministry of Defence (MoD).
In early March, Russian ground forces seized Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) in southeastern Ukraine, and analysis of imagery from August 21 has now identified Russian military equipment and tanks located a short distance from reactor five.
In a statement released about the alarming imagery, the MoD said: “Russian troops were probably attempting to conceal the vehicles by parking them under overhead pipes and gantries.”
The MoD warned that Moscow “is probably prepared to exploit any Ukrainian military activity near ZNPP for propaganda purposes” and that the principal risks to the reactor remain disruption to cooling systems and damages to back-up power supply.
The government in Kyiv has alleged Russia is essentially holding the Soviet-era nuclear plant hostage, storing weapons there and launching attacks from around it, while Moscow accuses Ukraine of recklessly firing on the facility, which is located in the city of Enerhodar.
“Anybody who understands nuclear safety issues has been trembling for the last six months,” said Mycle Schneider, an independent policy consultant and coordinator of the World Nuclear Industry Status Report.
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Russia says killed over 200 Ukraine troops in rail strike
Russia’s defence ministry said that it killed over 200 Ukrainian troops in the railway station attack that Kyiv said left 25 people, including children, dead.
The Russian rocket attack on a train station in Ukraine on Wednesday came as the country marked the anniversary of its independence from Soviet rule.
“As a result of a direct hit by an Iskander missile on a military train at the Chaplyne railway station in the Dnipropetrovsk region, more than 200 servicemen of the reserve of Ukraine’s Armed Forces and 10 units of military equipment were destroyed,” the ministry said in its daily briefing.
It added that the train was “en route to combat zones” in the eastern Donbas region that Moscow seeks to fully control.
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