Russian Defense Ministry: Russia considers weighs shutdown of Zaporozhye nuclear power plant as it warns of coming Ukraine attack
August 18, 2022
As a result of use of Russian Aerospace Forces operational-tactical aviation near Avdeevka, 37th Battalion of 56th AFU Motorized Infantry Brigade has completely lost its combat effectiveness. Personnel losses have exceeded 60 per cent. Donetsk Task Force command has withdrawn the battalion's remnants to the rear for re-forming.
Russian Aerospace Force's high-precision guided strikes on manpower and military equipment concentrations of 18th Battalion of 35th Marines' Brigade of AFU near Belaya Krynitsa and Velikoye Artakovo have eliminated over 80 nationalists and injured more than 50.
High-precision ground-based weapons have hit a temporary foreign mercenary base in Kharkov. More than 90 militants have been eliminated.
Army aviation strike of the Russian Aerospace Forces against a temporary deployment point of 1st Battalion of 28th Mechanized Brigade of AFU has destroyed about 60 nationalists and 8 units of special vehicles near Posad-Pokrovske, Nikolaev Region.
As a result of concentrated artillery strikes of the Russian troops on combat positions of 95th Airborne Assault Brigade of AFU near Mazanovka in Donetsk People's Republic, more than 250 nationalists have been eliminated.
Operational-tactical and army aviation, missile troops and artillery strikes continue against military facilities in Ukraine.
5 AFU command posts have been hit, including those of 72nd Mechanized Brigade near Artemovsk, 46th Airmobile Brigade near Belaya Krinitsya in Kherson Region, as well as 234 areas of AFU manpower and military equipment concentration.
3 missile and artillery weapons and ammunition depots near Zvanovka, Vasyukovka in Donetsk People's Republic and Bereznevatoye in Nikolaev Region have been destroyed.
Russian air defence means have destroyed 10 Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles near Yegorovka, Staromlynovka, Novogrodovka in Donetsk People's Republic, Yakovenkovo, Lesnaya Stenka, Zeleniy Gai, Kochubeyevka in Kharkov Region, Bezymennoye, Charivnoye and Bruskinskoye in Kherson Region.
In addition, 3 shells of multiple rocket launchers have been shot down near Topolskoye and Suligovka, Kharkov Region.
In total, 267 Ukrainian airplanes and 148 helicopters, 1,757 unmanned aerial vehicles, 366 anti-aircraft missile systems, 4,340 tanks and other armored combat vehicles, 800 multiple launch rocket systems, 3,312 field artillery and mortars, as well as 4,938 units of special military vehicles were destroyed during the operation.
Russian Defence Ministry is analysing the development of the situation at Zaporozhye nuclear power plant.
Since July 18, 2022, the station has been subjected to systematic shelling by the Ukrainian armed forces using multiple rocket launchers, artillery and unmanned aerial vehicles.
As of August 18, 2022, 12 shellings have taken place, during which more than 50 artillery shells and 5 kamikaze drones have been detected on the territory of NPP and Energodar city.
The Russian Defence Ministry conducted an investigation and established that the strikes were launched from the direction of Marganets and Nikopol' settlements.
The shelling resulted in damage to the station's auxiliary support systems as well as life support facilities in Energodar.
According to the Defence Ministry, the Ukrainian side, together with their US handlers, are trying to play the card by causing what they believe to be a minor accident at the nuclear power plant and thus disrupting the normal and safe operation of the plant, blaming it on Russia.
The Ukrainian side has repeatedly claimed that the Russian Armed Forces are striking at the plant and that Russian heavy weaponry is stationed at the plant, which is used to fire on the Ukrainian Armed Forces' facilities.
Russian Defence Ministry is ready to provide the IAEA with real high-resolution images, a sample placed on a slide, which shows that we do not place weapons, much less heavy ones, on the territory of this station. The Russian Defence Minister told UN Secretary-General António Guterres.
We know that with a large number of military and commercial foreign satellites, the same information can be presented to the global public by the US side.
At the same time, the US is keeping silent on objective data about the shelling and the situation at the nuclear power plant, thereby encouraging impunity for the Kiev regime and contributing to a possible nuclear catastrophe in Europe.
It is no coincidence that the media widely quotes the conclusions of experts of the American Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (Washington, D.C.) and some other similar institutions of Western countries, rather than the IAEA, which is entitled to such conclusions, that a large-scale catastrophe at ZNPP seems unlikely to occur.
According to them, the concrete shelters of its nuclear reactors are 10 metres thick, and the plant was also designed and built to cope with incidents such as the downing of a civilian aircraft.
However, it cannot be ruled out that a direct hit by large-calibre artillery shells into a dry storage facility for spent nuclear fuel would result in radioactive contamination of the area within a radius of up to 20 km, and an emergency situation at a nuclear reactor within 30 km at most. It is stressed that the risks of radiation spreading across Europe are estimated to be minimal.
Thus, according to US experts, the consequences of the nuclear incident at Zaporozhye NPP would be limited and would not affect the territory of European countries.
According to our experts, a similar situation may arise at Zaporozhye NPP because of AFU's actions.
For example, in case of failure of backup diesel generators and mobile pumps, in an emergency situation the core will overheat and consequently destroy the reactor facilities at Europe's largest nuclear power plant, releasing radioactive substances into the atmosphere and spreading them hundreds of kilometres away.
Such an emergency would cause mass population migration and have more catastrophic consequences than the impending gas energy crisis in Europe, as predicted by a number of European specialist organisations.
UN Secretary-General Guterres is also reportedly planning to visit Odessa city as part of his trip to Ukraine from August 17 to 19, 2022. By this date, the Ukrainian Armed Forces plan to hold a staged provocation of a man-made disaster at Zaporozhye NPP, which consists of a radiation leak, destroying the integrity of the nuclear waste storage facility and putting the NPP reactor into an abnormal operating state.
All this, according to their intention, should be a consequence of military action by the Russian Armed Forces on the territory of the nuclear plant, and incompetence of the Russian specialists involved in the operation of the nuclear facility.
For the purpose of staging, AFU plans to fully deploy radiation observation posts in the formations, military units and subunits deployed in Zaporozhye Region of Ukraine, which are part of the Dneper task force, to provide 100 per cent of servicemen with NBC protection equipment, conduct training on chemical and radiation protection and other safety measures for the visit of Guterres. In particular, units of 44th Artillery Brigade have been ordered to be ready by August 19, to act in conditions of radioactive contamination of the terrain. Units of 704th Separate Regiment of AFU's NBCP regiment are also being redeployed to Zaporozhye NPP area.
Artillery strikes are planned on ZNPP from Nikopol' city. This "spectacle" will be accompanied by public warnings about rising radiation levels and other "special effects". The staging is being carried out in order to influence the UN Secretary-General and the international community to cover up decisions favourable to Kiev.
The ultimate goal of the provocation is to create an exclusion zone of up to 30 km, to bring international forces and foreign observers to ZNPP territory, and to accuse the Russian Armed Forces of nuclear terrorism.
As a conclusion based on the above, we would like to draw your attention to the fact that in case of continuation of negative development of the situation related to shelling of the nuclear plant by Ukraine, the issue of putting Units 5 and 6 into "cold reserve" may be considered, resulting in the shutdown of Zaporozhye NPP.