Earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan offered Russia’s representative, Vladimir Putin, Turkey’s mediation in the crisis surrounding Europe’s largest nuclear power plant located in southern Ukraine.
The shutdown of the plant, which had already occurred on August 25, came “after new explosions in the area,” the IAEA said.
However, the plant continues to operate “thanks to an emergency line” that supplies it, allowing cooling of the nuclear fuel, the IAEA notes.
A total loss of power to the plant – if the external power is cut off and the emergency generators are not working – can lead to overheating of the installations.
For weeks, bombings have continued to target the site of a power plant that Russia and Ukraine accuse each other of risking a major nuclear disaster.
Strikes and fighting continued in Ukraine on Saturday.
In Moscow’s preferred Donbass (East), the main frontline, “the Russian army is attacking in the directions of Pakmud and Avdivka,” the Ukrainian military pointed out in a press release, which announced “five strikes” near the Ukrainian Air Force. Donetsk and Pivtenny.
In the center, Russian attacks killed a nine-year-old boy and seriously injured 10 others, in Zelenodolsk in Dnipropetrovsk region (center), according to Ukrainian officials, who also reported intense shelling in “Novgorod region- Sivarsk” (north). ), near the Russian border, “more than 50 explosions”, without casualties.
A fight near a power plant
Earlier today, in a phone interview, “President Erdogan told[Vladimir Putin]that Turkey can help with the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant, as it did with the agreement on grains,” the Turkish presidential office said in a statement. .
The Kremlin confirmed the discussion between MM. Putin and Erdogan have confirmed that they want to “increase their economic and trade relations” through “joint strategic projects in the energy sector”.
The Turkish press release did not specify whether Ankara had formally mediated for Ukraine.
Turkey wants to present a proposal for the creation of an office dedicated to negotiations between Russia and Ukraine in international organizations, similar to the grain agreement, in Istanbul. Plant.
Turkey maintains good relations with both Moscow and Kiev. While Ankara provided military drones to Ukraine, it refused to join Western sanctions against Russia after Ukraine invaded.
In July, an agreement between Russia and Ukraine following Turkish mediation allowed the resumption of Ukrainian wheat exports, hampered by the Russian naval blockade imposed at Kiev on the Black Sea.
The situation at the Zaporijjia power plant, which fell into the hands of Russian troops in March, shortly after Moscow launched its invasion of Ukraine, worries many international leaders.
In a daily update on operations in Ukraine, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Saturday that troops in Moscow had “repelled” an amphibious assault attempt by Ukrainian forces “recapturing” the center the day before.
On Friday, kyiv said it attacked a Russian base in Enerkodar, a town near the plant, which Russia accuses of withdrawing its weapons ahead of an inspection by the IAEA panel on Thursday.
After the inspection, IAEA director Raffaele Croci said on Thursday that the plant’s “physical integrity” had been breached “on several occasions”. It was “something that cannot continue,” he added, without naming the party responsible.
“The Winter of War”
The European Union confirmed on Saturday that it was ready for a total cut in gas after Russian group Gazprom announced on Friday evening that it would suspend its exports to Europe via the Nord Stream gas pipeline. Russian gas off.
“We are well prepared to counter Russia’s aggressive use of gas weapons,” European Economic Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said. “We urge the Russians to respect the agreements, but if they don’t, we are prepared to respond.”
According to Gazprom, the Nord Stream, which connects Russia to northern Germany, must be shut down “completely” until a turbine can be repaired. The Russian team did not specify a date for the resumption of operations.
Gazprom’s announcement came after the G7 nations decided on Friday to target Russia’s energy wind and cap the price of its oil.
On Friday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen estimated that “the time will come” to put a cap on the price of gas imported by pipeline from Russia.
In the European Union, gas reserves are currently “around 80%, thanks to the “diversification” of suppliers,” Mr. Gentiloni pointed out, even if the situation differs from one country to another.
In a sign of the gravity of the situation, Sweden, which has seized the “winter of war”, indicated on Saturday that it would offer financial guarantees amounting to several “billion dollars” to energy companies in the Nordic and Baltic countries. In order to avoid a financial crisis caused by energy shortages in Europe.