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Russia wants to link the Zaporozhye plant with the Crimea – News

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Russian forces that control the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant are preparing to link the block to the Crimean peninsula annexed by Moscow in 2014, damaging facilities in the process, Energoatom, the operator of the Ukrainian nuclear power plant, warned on Tuesday, August 9.

“The Russian military at the Zaporozhye NPP launched the Rosatom program to connect the station to the Crimean energy system,” Petr Kotin, head of Energoatom, told Ukrainian television.

“To do this, you first need to damage the power lines at the plant connected to the Ukrainian energy system. From 7 to 9 August, the Russians have already damaged three power lines. Now the plant is working with one production line, which is an extremely dangerous way of working,” he added.

“When the last production line is shut down, the plant will be powered by diesel generators. Then everything will depend on its reliability and fuel reserves,” he explained.

Located near the city of Energodar, on the banks of the Dnieper and close to the Crimean peninsula, Europe’s largest power plant has six of Ukraine’s 15 reactors, capable of powering four million homes.

On March 4, a few days after the start of the invasion of Ukraine, the facilities came under the control of Russian troops.

Moscow and Kyiv have been accusing each other of attacking the nuclear power plant since Friday, but this information cannot be independently confirmed.

However, the explosions are alarming around the world.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned in Japan that any attack on a nuclear plant is a “suicide mission”, referring to the attack in Zaporozhye, but without naming those responsible.

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The IAEA Director General, Argentine diplomat Rafael Grossi, expressed extreme concern over the bombing of the nuclear plant and warned that it was “playing with fire” with the risk of a “nuclear catastrophe.”

Kyiv and Moscow urge to send an international mission to the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant

Ukraine yesterday called Russia’s allegations “completely unfounded” that Kyiv had bombed the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant in the country’s southeast and called for a UN-led international mission to be sent by the end of August.

Speaking in Vienna, Ukraine’s Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA, a United Nations organization) Yevhen Tsymbalyuk acknowledged that the situation at the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant, Europe’s largest, was “not positive” and warned of a “potential catastrophe.”

On the contrary, Russia has assured that it is keeping the IAEA informed about the situation with the nuclear power plant, which is now controlled by the Russian army and the target of several attacks last Friday, and has acknowledged the need for an international inspection.

“We regularly send up-to-date information to the IAEA “on the spot” and which is reflected in the information circulars of the organization, which clearly reveal the criminal actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the command of which has finally lost the ability to think rationally,” the spokeswoman said. voice of the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova.

According to a representative of Russian diplomacy, the Ukrainian military “had no elementary sense of self-preservation.”

“By aiming their artillery at the operating reactors and storage facilities for spent nuclear fuel, the Ukrainians are shooting at themselves,” he warned, noting that “the situation is becoming more dangerous every day.”

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Also from Vienna, Ukraine’s ambassador to the IAEA pointed out that the recent attacks that took place on Friday and Saturday destroyed numerous surveillance sensors, so it is not possible to measure the level of radiation at the entire station.

“We are awaiting the arrival of an international mission led by the IAEA, as well as experts from the UN and other countries. This mission is important because the specialists must draw real conclusions, and their very presence will increase the safety level of the plant,” Tsymbalyuk continued.

Condemning “Russian nuclear terrorism”, the ambassador also assured that the presence of IAEA experts at nuclear power plants would never be perceived by Kyiv as “legitimation” of the Russian occupation.

A spokeswoman for Moscow diplomacy preferred to welcome statements by UN Secretary General António Guterres in support of the IAEA’s efforts “to create conditions aimed at stabilizing the situation in Zaporozhye and providing (the agency) with access to the center.”

“We hope from the UN side that now there are no obstacles to organizing an international mission. [da AIEA] to the Zaporozhye plant, ”added Zakharova.

The Moscow spokesman also deplored the UN’s slow response after the first Russian reports of attacks on the plant.

*With Lusa and AFP

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Vladimir Putin has delayed the invasion of Ukraine at least three times.

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Putin has repeatedly consulted with Russian Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu about the invasion, Europa Press told Ukraine’s chief intelligence director Vadim Skibitsky.

According to Skibitsky, it was the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), which is responsible for counterintelligence and espionage work, that put pressure on Gerasimov and other military agencies to agree to launch an offensive. .

However, according to the Ukrainian intelligence services, the FSB considered that by the end of February sufficient preparations had already been made to guarantee the success of the Russian Armed Forces in a lightning invasion.

However, according to Kyiv, the Russian General Staff provided the Russian troops with supplies and ammunition for only three days, hoping that the offensive would be swift and immediately successful.

The head of Ukrainian intelligence also emphasized the cooperation of local residents, who always provided the Ukrainian authorities with up-to-date information about the Russian army, such as the number of soldiers or the exact location of troops.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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Life sentence for former Swedish official for spying for Russia

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A Stockholm court on Monday sentenced a former Swedish intelligence officer to life in prison for spying for Russia, and his brother to at least 12 years in prison. In what is considered one of the most serious cases in Swedish counterintelligence history, much of the trial took place behind closed doors in the name of national security.

According to the prosecution, it was Russian military intelligence, the GRU, who took advantage of the information provided by the two brothers between 2011 and their arrest at the end of 2021.

Peyman Kia, 42, has held many senior positions in the Swedish security apparatus, including the army and his country’s intelligence services (Säpo). His younger brother, Payam, 35, is accused of “participating in the planning” of the plot and of “managing contacts with Russia and the GRU, including passing on information and receiving financial rewards.”

Both men deny the charges, and their lawyers have demanded an acquittal on charges of “aggravated espionage,” according to the Swedish news agency TT.

The trial coincides with another case of alleged Russian espionage, with the arrest of the Russian-born couple in late November in a suburb of Stockholm by a police team arriving at dawn in a Blackhawk helicopter.

Research website Bellingcat identified them as Sergei Skvortsov and Elena Kulkova. The couple allegedly acted as sleeper agents for Moscow, having moved to Sweden in the late 1990s.

According to Swedish press reports, the couple ran companies specializing in the import and export of electronic components and industrial technology.

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The man was again detained at the end of November for “illegal intelligence activities.” His partner, suspected of being an accomplice, has been released but remains under investigation.

According to Swedish authorities, the arrests are not related to the trial of the Kia brothers.

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Ukraine admitted that Russia may announce a general mobilization

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“They can strengthen their positions. We understand that this can happen. At the same time, we do not rule out that they will announce a general mobilization,” Danilov said in an interview with the Ukrainska Pravda online publication.

Danilov believed that this mobilization would also be convened “to exterminate as many as possible” of Russian citizens, so that “they would no longer have any problems on their territory.”

In this sense, Danilov also reminded that Russia has not given up on securing control over Kyiv or the idea of ​​the complete “destruction” of Ukraine. “We have to be ready for anything,” he said.

“I want everyone to understand that [os russos] they have not given up on the idea of ​​destroying our nation. If they don’t have Kyiv in their hands, they won’t have anything in their hands, we must understand this,” continued Danilov, who also did not rule out that a new Russian offensive would come from “Belarus and other territories.” .

As such, Danilov praised the decision of many of its residents who chose to stay in the Ukrainian capital when the war broke out in order to defend the city.

“They expected that there would be panic, that people would run, that there would be nothing to protect Kyiv,” he added, referring to President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

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At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The Russian invasion, justified by Russian President Vladimir Putin on the need to “denazify” and demilitarize Ukraine for Russia’s security, was condemned by the international community at large, which responded by sending weapons to Ukraine and imposing political and economic sanctions on Russia.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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