The UN calls the Russian attack on the Ukrainian nuclear power plant "unacceptable and highly irresponsible" | International
The United Nations Security Council met this Friday in an emergency session to analyze the Russian attack on the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant. The call was requested by several countries, including the US, the UK and France. According to the head of UN political affairs, Rosemary DiCarlo, who opened the session, military operations around nuclear plants and other basic civilian infrastructure are "unacceptable" and "highly irresponsible." The British ambassador, Barbara Woodward, has pointed out that attacking a nuclear facility for civilian use is "prohibited by the Geneva Convention and international law", and has called for the immediate withdrawal of all Russian forces from the site. Zaporizhia, the largest nuclear complex in Europe, provides electricity to four million Ukrainian homes.
The US ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, said: “Thank God the world narrowly avoided a nuclear catastrophe this morning... We all held our breath as we watched in real time how it unfolded. [el asalto]. I applaud the ability of the Ukrainian operators to keep all six reactors in a safe condition while under attack." The diplomat described what happened as "irresponsible and dangerous", and a "threat to the security of civilians in Russia, Ukraine and Europe". The Russian ambassador, Vasili Nebenzia, replied that the risk to the Ukrainian civilian population does not come from the attack on Zaporizhia, "but from the Ukrainian nationalists." The Kremlin representative blamed the attack, which he called yet another display of lies and misinformation against Russia, on "a group of Ukrainian saboteurs" who attacked the complex "to harm Moscow." Nebenzia claimed that his country controls all the facilities.
The session, in which no text was expected to be voted on, was closed by the representative of Ukraine, Sergii Kislitsia. With his usual blue and yellow striped tie -the colors of his national flag- and in the defiant and direct tone that he has been using these days, the diplomat once again faced his Russian counterpart, whom he urged to back down. . "He tells us what is happening in Ukraine in an angelic way, but I remind him that Satan was also an angel," he snapped at Nebenzia, who shook her head negatively. Kislitsia also urged the Council to request a ban on all flights in Ukrainian airspace, which would be equivalent to declaring an exclusion zone already ruled out by NATO.
Coordination with the IAEA
France has testified to its support for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), "to monitor the situation." The head of the agency, Rafael Grossi, has proposed a meeting at the Chernobyl plant with interlocutors from Ukraine and Russia to establish a framework of security guarantees. Chernobyl was one of the first targets of the offensive in Ukraine, and has been under Russian control since the first day of the war, something for which the US ambassador also asked for explanations.
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From a plane that was taking him to Tehran to address "aspects of the negotiation on [el restablecimiento de] the Iranian nuclear pact”, Grossi intervened by video call at the meeting to report that the reactors were not affected. “Operations continue normally, although one cannot speak of normalcy when there are soldiers in charge of the plant. Grossi praised the work of the Council, which he asked to support the IAEA to develop "its technical work" on the ground.
Russia continues to accumulate diplomatic setbacks. After the rejection of the Extraordinary General Assembly held this Monday, which "deplored" -the term used instead of "condemning"- the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the UN Human Rights Council has approved by a large majority this Friday a resolution in favor of an international commission of inquiry into violations of human rights and humanitarian law in Ukraine. The resolution has been adopted by 32 votes in favor, two against (Russia and Eritrea) and 13 abstentions, including those of China, India and Venezuela.
"The UN Human Rights Council has urgently decided to establish an independent international commission of inquiry as a result of Russian aggression against Ukraine," he reported on his Twitter account.
The somber memory of the Chernobyl catastrophe in 1986 resounded again today in the Security Council room, the highest executive body of the UN, which, however, has shown in recent days its inability to reach consensus and action for the Russia's right to vote, which a week ago thwarted a resolution condemning the Kremlin. "It would be a terrible mistake to consider the clear and obvious flaws and failures of the Security Council as proof that the UN itself is a meaningless anachronism in today's world," said an article published this week by the information portal Pass Blue. But the succession of monotonous messages, denouncing and repudiating Russian aggression, do not materialize in practice, while more than 1.2 million people have left Ukraine. France and Mexico have requested another Council meeting. currently undated, to address the state of humanitarian aid.
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