what are the goals of the IAEA inspection mission expected this week at the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant?

Facing the risk “real disaster”, the nuclear police came to the scene. The Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Mariano Grossi, announced on Monday August 29 that he was on his way to the Zaporijjia nuclear power plant. Located in the south-east of Ukraine, it has been the target in recent weeks of military strikes between Russia and Ukraine.

“We must protect the security of Ukraine and the largest power plant in Europe”insisted Rafael Mariano Grossi on Twitter, accompanying his message with a photo of his team of a dozen people. Franceinfo returns to the objectives of this anticipated mission of the UN organization.

Performing “urgent rescue activities”

This is one of the missions set by the IAEA on Twitter: if it’s there, you should “ehcarry out urgent protective activities”, he warned.

A declaration accompanying the procedures discussed in brief by Rafael Mariano Grossi, the director of AEIA, in an interview with world, August 26. He mentions the need for “fix the requirement” in the facility, and increases desire “restart transmission system damaged.”

On Thursday, the site was briefly “disconnected” from the network after damage to power lines, according to Ukrainian operator Energoatom. Always according to operator, a fire near the Zaporijjia thermal power plant, near the nuclear power plant, twice caused the last line connecting the site to the electricity grid to be cut.“Three More Lines” electrical before “previously damaged by terrorist attacks” Russian, Energoatom continues. According to Karine Herviou, Deputy Director General of the Institute for Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety interviewed on August 29 by Franceinfo, therefore it is necessary to return “either a power supply line or refueling plant”.

War damage assessment

Ten experts from the UN organization also had the task of inspecting the plant to see the extent of the damage caused by the six-month war. The mission will assess the damage caused to the plant’s installations, determine if safety, security and emergency systems are in place (…)”, thus warned the IAEA in a press release published on its site, Sunday, August 28. In detail, the agency plans tocheck spent storage pools and [de s]to solve the sensitive issue of power supply, which is essential for cooling the reactors”Rafael Mariano Grossi explained to The world.

At the same time, the IAEA should “Verify the status of reactors and stocks of nuclear materials to ensure that they have not been diverted from their peaceful use”the agency further specified in its press release.

Appreciate the working conditions of the staff

However controlled by Russian forces since the beginning of March, Zaporijjia has actually been exploited by its Ukrainian personnel since the beginning of the conflict. All the works of experts consist of establishing under what conditions this work is done.

“You can imagine that the staff are under a lot of pressure, on the battle line, which may have affected their families as well”, Advance Karine Hervioualways for franceinfo. So the IAEA should “Discuss with the operatorthe personnel of the plant, to see if they can perform their function, that is to maintain the systems and safety of all the systems of the plant”he added.

Make recommendations

In his interview with world, the director of AEIA stated that he wanted to form “recommendations to be disseminated in an official and impartial manner”, at the end of the visit. Even in a crisis situation, the agency has no decision-making power. Its role is limited to making recommendations and reporting its findings in a report. Rafael Mariano Grossi also admitted wanting experts from the agency can remain permanently in Zaporozhye“, after this mission.

Try to restore stability around the plant

While for several weeks, kyiv and Moscow have accused each other of bombing near the plant, the international community is counting on easing tensions after the intervention of the IAEA. “The way to strengthen the situation is to have an international presence there,” thus declared the director of the IAEA for France 24, on Thursday.“I don’t have an official role as a mediator between Russia and Ukraine, my mandate is limited. My mission is of a technical nature. (…) I want to believe that our presence there has effect, if not deterrent, at least true”he completed the interview for The world.

The role of the IAEA mission remains to be put into perspective, however, according to Bruno Chareyron, laboratory director of the Commission for Independent Research and Information on Radioactivity (CRIIRAD). “This is a new step, but we must remain vigilant. Until there is demilitarization in this area, the problem cannot be solved by a simple one-off mission. It endangers the plant, it is the bombings”, will he insist The Parisian. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, called last Thursday for the demilitarization of the nuclear power plant. A call that has so far gone unanswered.

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