Ukraine: Zelenskyy Accuses Russia Of 'Nuclear Terrorism'
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused Russia of nuclear terrorism following an attack on Europe's biggest nuclear power plant.
Authorities in the country said a fire broke out in a training building outside the power plant in Zaporizhzhia after it was targeted by Russian forces in the early hours of Friday morning, March 4.
The fire burned for at least four hours as Russian troops are accused of having prevented Ukraine's emergency teams from responding to the blaze, but emergency services finally confirmed the fire had been extinguished at 6.20am local time.
VI analyzed and verified videos from the firefight at Europe's largest power plant in Zaporizhia, Ukraine.— Brenna T. Smith (@brenna__smith) March 4, 2022
The footage appears to show a line of military vehicles shooting at buildings inside the complex resulting in fires breaking out.
Read more here:https://t.co/RiovjGO00h pic.twitter.com/Ntlo85eElV
In the wake of the attack, Zelenskyy made an appeal to Europe for help in a statement in which he urged them to 'wake up'.
As cited by The Guardian, he commented: 'Europe must wake up now. The largest nuclear station in Europe is on fire. Right now Russian tanks are shelling nuclear units. Those are the tanks that have thermal vision, so they know where they are shelling. They prepared for it.'
Zelenskyy went on to liken the situation to the nuclear disaster at Chernobyl, addressing those who 'know how much suffering and victims were caused by the explosion at the nuclear station' and adding: 'It was a global disaster. Hundreds of thousands of people fought against its consequences. Tens of thousands of people were evacuated. Russia wants to repeat it but six times harder.'
'Europeans, please, wake up,' he continued. 'Tell your politicians, Russian troops are shelling [the] Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station, the city of Enerhodar. There are six energy units. Six. One unit exploded in Chernobyl. We warn everyone that not a single nation ever shelled nuclear power stations. For the first time in the history of humankind, the terrorist state commits nuclear terrorism.'
The president said Russian propagandists had 'threatened to cover the world with nuclear ashes', and stressed this threat had now turned in to a reality. He expressed hopes an explosion wouldn't occur as a result of the fire and acknowledged that those in charge of the station always kept it 'safe', so 'nobody could seize the station, so that nobody could plant mines at the station then blackmail the whole world with a nuclear disaster'.
'We must stop Russian troops,' Zelenskyy urged.
He made clear Ukraine is '15 nuclear units', saying that if there is an explosion, 'It will the end to all of us, the end of Europe, the evacuation of Europe.'
Zelenskyy claimed only immediate action from Europe 'can stop Russian troops and prevent the death of Europe from the disaster at a nuclear station'.
After the attack, the International Atomic Energy Agency said the fire has not affected essential equipment or caused radiation levels to change.
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