42 countries ask Russia to return the Zaporizhzhya power plant to Ukraine

“The deployment of Russian military personnel and weapons at the nuclear facility is unacceptable and disregards the principles of security and defense to which all member states of the International Atomic Energy Agency are bound,” the document said.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is a specialized organization of the United Nations that monitors compliance with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

The petition has been signed by the European Union, the United States, Great Britain, Norway, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and many other countries.

We call on the Russian Federation to immediately withdraw its military forces and other unauthorized personnel from the Zaporizhia Nuclear Power Plant and its immediate surroundings, as well as from all over Ukraine, so that the operator of the plant and the Ukrainian authorities can resume their sovereign functions within the internationally recognized borders of Ukraine.

“This will enable the IAEA to continue to monitor the implementation of Ukraine’s nuclear safety missions under safe, undisturbed conditions and according to the established schedule,” the declaration said.

On Sunday, the city of Enerhodar, which houses workers for Europe’s largest nuclear power plant and is located near the facility, was again attacked with artillery, and the two sides once again blamed each other for the attack.

IAEA experts are supposed to inspect the facility, which has been in Russia’s hands since March, but the United Nations, Russia and Ukraine cannot agree on the planning for the visit.

Mikhail Ulyanov, Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations in Vienna called on the United Nations on Sunday to intervene to ensure the safety of the power plant.

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According to press reports, the United Nations has not yet allowed Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, to travel to the site, not only for security reasons, but also because of a dispute over the itinerary.

Grossi could travel under Russian protection through Crimea in southern Ukraine, which Moscow annexed in 2014, but that would be considered an insult in Kyiv’s eyes.

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