A fire at Europe’s largest nuclear power plant was extinguished on Friday after Russian shelling set fire to a building on its site and caused international fear of a nuclear catastrophe.
There was no radiation release at the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant after a Russian “shell” hit a training center that was “not part of the reactor,” said Rafael Mariano Grossi, head of the UN Atomic Energy Agency.
The office of Enerhodar Mayor Dmitry Orlov told the Associated Press that Ukrainian firefighters were allowed to enter the scene at night. Grossi said Ukrainian employees of the station still monitor the reactor, but Ukrainian officials said Russian troops had taken control of the area as a whole. Only one reactor operates at about 60% capacity, the UN said.
Enerhoatom, the state operator of Ukraine’s nuclear power plant, said three Ukrainian servicemen were killed and two were injured in the attack, while Grossi said two people were injured in the blaze.
The fire sparked fears of a catastrophe similar to the 1986 Chernobyl accident that occurred about 65 miles north of the Ukrainian capital. Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine wrote in a tweet, “If it explodes, it will be 10 times bigger than Chernobyl!” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has renewed his call for a no-fly zone, calling the shelling “unprecedented terror.”
The attack came as the second week of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began on Friday. Russian troops attacked the neighboring strategic city of Zaporozhye, located on the Dnieper River. Heavy fighting also took place around Mariupol, a port city on the Sea of Azov. У intelligence updateBritish defense officials say Mariupol is likely surrounded by Russian troops and its civilian infrastructure is under Russian attack.
►The Russian parliament has passed a bill providing for up to 15 years in prison for deliberately disseminating “fake” information about hostilities.
►Minister of Defense of Ukraine Alexei Reznikov said on Facebook The country’s navy deliberately sank its flagship frigate, Hetman Sahaidachny, which was under repair to prevent Russian capture.
► Negotiations on Thursday between Russia and Ukraine led to a preliminary agreement on the creation of safe corridors for the evacuation of citizens and the delivery of humanitarian aid.
► Trading on the Moscow Stock Exchange will be closed on Friday, as the Russian ruble lost about 5% against the US dollar, which fell further after Western governments imposed sanctions that blocked most of the country’s access to the global financial system.
►The Pentagon said it had established a hotline with the Russian Defense Ministry on Tuesday “to prevent miscalculations, military incidents and escalation.”
►Famous soprano Anna Netrebko withdrew from her future performances in New York after failing to fulfill the condition of the Metropolitan Opera to refuse public support for Putin, reports Met on Twitter.
GET THE LATEST UPDATES OF UKRAINE:We will send you the latest news once a day.
“BOMBS, BOMBS, BOMBS”:Ukrainian refugees describe a painful journey to Poland
An expert group of three will monitor possible human rights violations in Ukraine after a majority vote of the UN Human Rights Council.
The United Nations High Representative for Human Rights voted 32 to 2 with 13 abstentions. Only Russia and Eritrea opposed the resolution, China abstained.
У tweetThe President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky praised the creation of the group, saying that “Russian war criminals will be brought to justice.”
Experts in international law have expressed concern on war crimes, including against civilians, and prosecutor of the International Criminal Courtseparated from the UN, earlier this week said it was also launching an investigation.
The office of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says it will seek an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council after Russian troops in Ukraine attacked a nuclear power plant and caused a fire.
Johnson’s office says he spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky early in the morning. He says Britain will immediately raise the issue with Russia and close partners.
“The prime minister has said that the ill-considered actions of (Russian President Vladimir) Putin could now threaten the security of the whole of Europe,” the Johnson office said in a statement. “He said (the United Kingdom) will do everything possible to keep the situation from getting worse.”
The Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau says he also talked to Zelensky about the attacks on the power plant.
“These unacceptable attacks by Russia must stop immediately,” he said on Twitter.
China has also said it is “seriously concerned about the safety and security” of nuclear facilities in Ukraine.
– Associated Press
The fire at the Ukrainian nuclear power plant raised concerns about “a little in the style of Fukushima”
Fears of an unprecedented nuclear disaster quickly spread overnight part of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant caught fire when Russian troops shelled the area.
Amid a stream of confusing, disturbing and sometimes contradictory information about the incident, the International Atomic Energy Agency soon said: “serious situation “did not affect the necessary equipment of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant and that radiation levels have not changed.
John B. Wolfstal, a former senior director of arms control and nonproliferation at the National Security Council, tweeted that the Zaporozhye power plant was “inherently safer and more secure than Chernobyl.”
James M. Acton, co-director of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s nuclear policy program. reiterated Jenex’s assessment of the danger posed by the Russian attack, saying the fire could lead to “a bit of Fukushima-style.”
In that nuclear incident in Japan, a strong earthquake and tsunami in 2011 destroyed the cooling systems of a station in Fukushima, which led to the melting of three reactors and the release of large amounts of radiation, as well as the fact that more than 160,000 people were evacuated.
The Chernobyl disaster, although geographically close, was caused by another process, Acton told USA TODAY. This was caused by an error of the operator and led to another level of danger – the situation of a nuclear fuel explosion. Read more here.
The Department of Homeland Security announced on Thursday a temporary protection status (TPS) for Ukrainians living in the United States that will protect them from deportation for the next 18 months as Ukraine fights ongoing attacks by Russia.
“Russia’s deliberate and unprovoked attack on Ukraine has led to a protracted war, senseless violence, and Ukrainians have been forced to seek refuge in other countries,” Interior Minister Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement. “In these extraordinary times, we will continue to provide our support and protection to the citizens of Ukraine in the United States.”
Individuals must live continuously in the U.S. from March 1 to be eligible for TPS, DHS said. This applies to about 30,000 citizens of Ukraine. Those trying to travel to the U.S. after March 1 are not eligible for TPS.
As more and more reports arrive, people of color fleeing Ukraine face discrimination at the border. the crisis has once again shown double standards in how nations treat refugees depending on country of origin, race, religion and more, scholars and refugees say.
Many of the same European countries that in the past denied refugees from the Middle East, Africa and Asia are now mostly welcoming refugees from Ukraine.
“It’s great that Europe welcomes Ukrainian refugees. That should be the answer,” said Nell Gabiam, an associate professor at Iowa State University who studies forced migration. “But it would be even better if this response was applied across the board to all refugees fleeing persecution and war.”
Philip Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, thanked governments and citizens for their “extraordinary acts of humanity and kindness”, but acknowledged that some refugees faced a “different attitude” at the border. Read on.
Contributed by: Associated Press