WASHINGTON, September 2. /TASS/. A visit of the fact-finding mission of the International Atomic Agency (IAEA) to the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant has become "a mild breakthrough" in the crisis surrounding the plant, Daryl Kimball, Executive Director of the Arms Control Association (ACA), told TASS on Friday.
"It is a mild breakthrough that after months of effort, Director General Grossi and his team finally made it to Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia (Zaporozhye - TASS) Nuclear Power Plant to assess conditions," Kimball said.
"However, even the ongoing presence of two IAEA specialists at the site cannot assure that fighting in and around the plant will not — in the days and weeks ahead — lead to a power failure, damage to reactor buildings, or to the spent fuel storage facilities that could lead to a major nuclear disaster," he believes.
Kimball has also called on Russia to "support the establishment of a ceasefire zone in and around the ZNPP that is enforced by a UN-sanctioned security team to ensure the facility is not compromised as a result of the fighting."
The Washington-based Arms Control Association (ACA) headed by Kimball was founded in 1971. It is one of the most famous US non-governmental organizations advocating bolstering international nonproliferation and disarmament efforts.
On Thursday, the IAEA mission led by Director General Rafael Grossi visited the Zaporozhye plant. In Grossi’s words, the international experts were able to obtain key information about the situation at the plant, and they will continue their work as many issues need more detailed discussion. The IAEA is establishing permanent presence at the Zaporozhye NPP, Grossi said. He also talked to residents of Energodar city, where the plant is located. The people handed him a letter calling for an end to Ukrainian provocations against the nuclear power plant.