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Ukraine denies attacking Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant

The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine, Europe’s largest such facility, has been occupied by Russian forces since the start of their February 2022 invasion.

Zaporizhzhia nuclearKYIV: Ukraine on Monday accused Moscow of spreading “fake” information after Russian officials said a Ukrainian drone had hit the Moscow-controlled Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.

The head of Ukraine’s centre for countering disinformation, Lieutenant Andriy Kovalenko, said Russia was intensifying a “campaign of provocation and fakes” after it claimed that Ukrainian forces attacked the plant on Sunday.

Russia is attacking the station “with drones, pretending that the threat to the plant and nuclear safety is coming from Ukraine,” Kovalenko said.

The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine, Europe’s largest such facility, has been occupied by Russian forces since the start of their February 2022 invasion.

Russia’s nuclear agency Rosatom said there was a “series of attacks” Sunday, with one drone striking the site’s canteen, wounding three staff members, one of them “severely”.

Drones also hit a cargo port and the roof of one of the site’s six reactors, it said.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which has experts at the plant, said the attacks caused a “physical impact” on one reactor and resulted in one casualty, but nuclear safety was not compromised.

Rosatom called on Western nations and IAEA chief Rafael Grossi to “categorically condemn the attempt to escalate the situation around the biggest nuclear power plant in Europe”.

Kovalenko accused Russia of “manipulating the concerns of the IAEA” and “trying to accuse Ukraine of nuclear terrorism”.

A spokesman for the Ukrainian defence ministry’s main directorate of intelligence, Andriy Yusov, had earlier accused Russia of endangering the power station and carrying out “simulated strikes”.

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