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IAEA report a distraction from SVR reports on weapons stored at Ukrainian NPPs — official

On Monday, it was reported that Ukrainian armed forces stockpile Western ammunition at nuclear power plants

MOSCOW, January 27. /TASS/. The IAEA’s fake report about alleged explosions near the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant was published in an attempt to draw attention away from the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service’s (SVR) report about ammunition being stored at Ukrainian nuclear power plants, says Renat Karchaa, advisor to Rosenergoatom CEO.

According to Karchaa, such actions by the IAEA prove that the SVR "has hit the bullseye."

"If this is true, then it is necessary to divert the public’s attention from nuclear power plants on Ukraine-controlled territory as much as possible, and instead switch the focus to the Zaporozhye NPP. It is quite possible that they used this pretext in this regard and have escalated the situation around the ZNPP this way," Karchaa said on Russian TV, answering a question about the reasons behind the fake IAEA report.

The second reason, Karchaa believes, is the IAEA’s desire to emphasize the issue of establishing a protection zone around the ZNPP, because, in the Western information space, this issue "gradually transitions into the demilitarization" of the plant.

"In my opinion, it is wrong and ugly to try to cover the miscalculations of Ukraine’s puppeteers in this war with the issue of nuclear security, and to seek to create unacceptable conditions for the Russian Federation," he added.

According to the official, a protection zone around the ZNPP is needed, but it is necessary to make a decision that will force Ukraine to stop shelling the station and the city of Energodar before negotiations can begin.

"However, this decision must be legally binding. Ukraine, which carried out these strikes, must understand the responsibility for non-compliance with this decision; meanwhile, Western curators seek to take Ukraine as far away from responsibility as possible," he explained.

On Monday, Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) press office said that Ukrainian armed forces stockpile Western ammunition - in particular HIMARS rockets - at nuclear power plants. The Ukrainian command believes that Russia will not target nuclear power plants, and, should a nuclear power plant get destroyed due to a "stray" air defense missile, Russia could be blamed for such a catastrophe, the SVR believes.

Later on Thursday, the IAEA reported explosions in direct proximity to the Zaporozhye NPP. Karchaa debunked this information in a conversation with TASS. He underscored that IAEA employees mistook artillery duels for explosions and noted that no explosions have occurred near the power plant recently. In addition, Karchaa highlighted that the IAEA made no such statements when Ukraine shelled the ZNPP, which "shows the double standards of this organization." He believes that this information was published intentionally in an attempt to convince the public of Russia’s inability to ensure nuclear security.