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IAEA mission falls short of Zaporozhye Region’s expectations — local official

The IAEA mission led by its chief Rafael Grossi arrived at the Zaporozhye NPP on September 1

MOSCOW, September 5. /TASS/. The IAEA mission’s visit to the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant has fallen short of the local people’s expectations it would end artillery bombardments, the chief of the region’s miliary-civilian administration, Yevgeny Balitsky, said on Monday.

"We expected that the IAEA’s influence would be enough to stop the shellings. This is the main thing we wanted to show: who was shelling us, who is the nuclear terrorist today," he said on the Soloviev Live TV channel.

Balitsky noted that region’s residents and the NPP’s personnel no longer hoped to hear the truth about the situation at the UN Security Council’s meeting on September 6.

"We don’t have such hope, I am speaking now not only on my own behalf, I am speaking on behalf of the people with whom I keep in touch, the power plant’s personnel and the people living in the liberated territories of the Zaporozhye Region," Balitsky said.

He stressed that the issues that the IAEA commission had outlined on its agenda by no means contributed to stopping bombardments or preventing a potential nuclear accident, while the presence of the IAEA’s permanent representatives at the power plant did not bring about the desired result, since the Ukrainian side "does not care at all about the fact that there are European monitors."

The IAEA’s mission under the agency's director-general Rafael Grossi arrived at the Zaporozhye NPP on September 1. According to Grossi himself, the inspectors were able to obtain key data about the situation at the station. Most experts have now left the facility. Two of the mission’s members reportedly remain there.

Last week, Russia requested a meeting of the UN Security Council on the situation at the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant on September 6th. It is planned to invite Grossi and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to the meeting to hear their reports on the current situation.