Russian-Ukrainian war: UN nuclear team “en route” to Zaporizhzhia, says IAEA chief – live | Ukraine

#Zaporizhzhya (ISAMZ) is now on its way. We must protect the safety and security of #Ukraine’s and Europe’s biggest nuclear facility. Proud to lead this mission which will be in #ZNPP later this week. pic.twitter.com/tyVY7l4SrM

— Rafael MarianoGrossi (@rafaelmgrossi) August 29, 2022n","url":"https://twitter.com/rafaelmgrossi/status/1564096717397659649","id":"1564096717397659649","hasMedia":false,"role":"inline","isThirdPartyTracking":false,"source":"Twitter","elementId":"4887ee52-6c20-498c-bb32-1fa2055d6c77"}],"attributes":{"pinned":false,"keyEvent":true,"summary":false},"blockCreatedOn":1661750267000,"blockCreatedOnDisplay":"06.17 BST","blockLastUpdated":1661750493000,"blockLastUpdatedDisplay":"06.21 BST","blockFirstPublished":1661750494000,"blockFirstPublishedDisplay":"06.21 BST","blockFirstPublishedDisplayNoTimezone":"06.21","title":"UN nuclear watchdog to visit Zaporizhzhia plant this week","contributors":[],"primaryDateLine":"Mon 29 Aug 2022 07.03 BST","secondaryDateLine":"First published on Mon 29 Aug 2022 06.17 BST"},{"id":"630c0a918f080ba02dce90b7","elements":[{"_type":"model.dotcomrendering.pageElements.TextBlockElement","html":"

Hello and welcome back to the Guardian’s live coverage of the war in Ukraine.

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I’m Samantha Lock and I will be bringing you all the latest developments for the next short while. Whether you’ve been following our coverage overnight or you’ve just dropped in, here are the latest lines.

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The UN nuclear watchdog will visit Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant this week, its director general has confirmed. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief, Rafael Grossi, said “the day has come” for a support mission to protect the safety and security of Europe’s largest nuclear facility and officials will visit the site “later this week.”

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Russian forces fired at Enerhodar, the city where the plant is located, late on Sunday night, according to Ukraine’s armed forces.

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The strike comes after Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Ukraine’s president, held a meeting with representatives of Ukraine’s defence and security sectors on Sunday.

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It is 8am in Kyiv. Here is where we stand:

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    n
  • Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Ukraine’s president, held a meeting with representatives of Ukraine’s defence and security sectors on Sunday. “All the issues we considered are important, but secret, I cannot go into detail,” he said. The meeting was attended by the heads of the armed forces, intelligence agencies, the ministry of defence, the ministry of internal affairs, the Ukrainian security service as well as other defence forces.

  • n
  • Russian artillery fired at Ukrainian towns across the river from the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, local officials said on Sunday. The regional governor, Oleksandr Starukh, said Russian forces struck residential buildings in the main city of Zaporizhzhia and the town of Orikhiv farther east. Ukraine’s military reported shelling of nine more towns in the area on the opposite side of the Dnieper river from the plant.

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  • The UN nuclear watchdog is waiting for clearance for its officials to visit the plant “to help stabilise the nuclear safety and security situation there”. The Energoatom head, Petro Kotin, told the Guardian a visit from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) could come before the end of the month, but the Ukrainian energy minister, Lana Zerkal, told a local radio station she was not convinced Russia was negotiating in good faith.

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  • The US has said Russia does not want to acknowledge the grave radiological risk at Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, adding that was the reason it blocked a nuclear non-proliferation treaty deal’s final draft. “The Russian Federation alone decided to block consensus on a final document at the conclusion of the Tenth Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Russia did so in order to block language that merely acknowledged the grave radiological risk at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine,” said a US state department statement.

  • n
  • Concern about the potential risk of radiation leaks at the plant persists. Ukrainian and Russian authorities issued fresh warnings about the risk of radioactive leaks, after shelling that the sides blamed on each other. Ukraine’s state energy operator warned there are “risks of hydrogen leakage and sputtering of radioactive substances”. Russia has ignored widespread international calls for the area to be demilitarised.

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  • Ukrainians are likely to experience their coldest winter in decades, its gas chief has said, as the thermostats on its Soviet-era centralised heating systems are set to be switched on later and turned down. Yurii Vitrenko, the head of the state gas company Naftogaz, said indoor temperatures would be set at between 17-18C, about four degrees lower than normal, and he advised people to stock up on blankets and warm clothes for when outdoor temperatures fall to and beyond the -10C winter average.

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  • Germany is replenishing its gas stocks more quickly than expected despite drastic Russian supply cuts and should meet an October target early, the government has said. Europe’s largest economy is heavily dependent on Russian gas and has raced to bolster its reserves before winter, crediting energy-saving measures in recent weeks and massive purchases of gas from other suppliers.

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  • EU foreign ministers are expected to suspend Russian tourist visa facilitation next week. The EU move falls short of an outright ban but would make getting travel documents significantly more complicated and expensive. The EU foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, said a ban would lack the necessary support. “I don’t think that to cut the relationship with the Russian civilian population will help and I don’t think that this idea will have the required unanimity,” he told Austria’s ORF TV on Sunday.

  • n
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Key events

Russian forces ‘rebuild’ Mariupol theater to cover up war crimesaccording to an adviser to the mayor of the city.

Petr Andriushchenko said Moscow forces were rebuilding the theater under the guise of reconstruction with “historical value”.

The occupiers are hiding their own war crime… They are in a hurry to eliminate all traces and evidence through “reconstruction”. Under the guise of “historical value”.

… The only historical value came when two bombs fell. And it is this historic value that the occupiers are now trying to hide.

Russian forces struck the theater in March, killing around 300 people who were using the building as a refuge.

Russia increases its mobilization reserves and plans to mobilize around 90,000 military personnelaccording to Ukrainian intelligence.

The representative of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Vadym Skibitsky, said in a statement on Sunday:

At the same time, different approaches are used: so-called volunteer battalions, and reserve battalions, battalions of the so-called “country combat army reserve” (BARS), which they now recruit from each military district in order to to replenish losses, increase their efforts and increase the number of the same group that can be used against our state.

According to Skibitsky, Russia faces major problems in equipping its armed forces.

Time is running out, they haven’t received a blitzkrieg. Will mobilizing more people in the Russian Federation help? Probably not, after all. Because the morale of soldiers, as they carry out combat operations, drops, first of all. Second, they are less and less willing to enter the ranks of the Soviet Union voluntarily. In addition, panic has set in among the population of the big cities, because no one just wants to go and serve in the armed forces, let alone go to war.

Russia strikes city where Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is located, Ukraine says

Russian forces fired on Enerhodar, the city where the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is locatedaccording to the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Russian forces shell residential areas of the city. Cars and homes of civilians are burning,” the military said alongside footage purportedly of the attack. published on his official Telegram account

In the footage, several cars can be seen engulfed in flames as firefighters rush to put out the blaze.

The Ukrainian president’s chief of staff, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, also appeared to confirm the reports on Sunday evening on his Telegram channel alongside a video of firefighters spraying burning cars.

“They provoke and try to blackmail the world,” chief of staff Andriy Yermak said.

Russian forces have shelled Ukrainian towns across the river from the plant in recent days, officials said.

Regional Governor Oleksandr Starukh said on Telegram on Sunday that Russian forces struck residential buildings in the main town of Zaporizhzhia, about two hours’ drive from the plant, and the town of Orikhiv further east.

The Ukrainian military reported the bombing of nine other towns in the region across the Dnipro River, while the Russian news agency quoted authorities as saying they had shot down a Ukrainian drone that was planning to attack the plant nuclear waste storage facility.

UN nuclear watchdog to visit Zaporizhzhia plant this week

The UN nuclear watchdog will visit Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant this week, its director general confirmed.

international atomic energy agency (IAEA) Chief, Raphael Grossitweeted early this morning:

The day has come, the IAEA Support and Assistance Mission in Zaporizhzhia (ISAMZ) is now on its way. We must protect the safety and security of the largest nuclear facility in Ukraine and Europe. Proud to lead this mission which will be at ZNPP later this week.

The mission will assess any physical damage to the plant, determine the functionality of safety and security systems, assess personnel conditions and carry out urgent safeguard activities.

#Zaporizhzhya (ISAMZ) is now on its way. We must protect the safety and security of #Ukraine’s and Europe’s biggest nuclear facility. Proud to lead this mission which will be in #ZNPP later this week. pic.twitter.com/tyVY7l4SrM

— Rafael MarianoGrossi (@rafaelmgrossi) August 29, 2022n","url":"https://twitter.com/rafaelmgrossi/status/1564096717397659649","id":"1564096717397659649","hasMedia":false,"role":"inline","isThirdPartyTracking":false,"source":"Twitter","elementId":"5b26165e-7d4a-4cb5-a727-f400d1759076"}}'>

Summary and welcome

Hello and welcome to the Guardian’s live coverage of the war in Ukraine.

I’m Samantha Lock and I’ll bring you all the latest developments in a short time. Whether you’ve been following our coverage overnight or just passed by, here are the final lines.

UN nuclear watchdog to visit Ukraine Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant this week, confirmed its general manager. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Rafael Grossi says ‘the day has come’ for a support mission to protect the safety and security of Europe’s largest nuclear facility and that officials will visit the site “later this week”.

Russian forces fired on Enerhodarthe city where the factory is located, late Sunday evening, according to the Ukrainian armed forces.

The strike comes later Volodymyr ZelenskyY, the Ukrainian president, held a meeting on Sunday with representatives of the Ukrainian defense and security sectors.

It’s 8am in Kyiv. Here is where we are:

  • Volodymyr Zelenskiy, President of Ukraine, held a meeting on Sunday with representatives of the Ukrainian defense and security sectors. “All the issues we looked at are important, but secret, I can’t go into detail,” he said. The meeting brought together the heads of the armed forces, intelligence agencies, the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ukrainian security service as well as other defense forces.

  • Russian artillery fired at Ukrainian towns across the river from the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, local officials said on Sunday. Regional Governor Oleksandr Starukh said Russian forces struck residential buildings in the main town of Zaporizhzhia and the town of Orikhiv further east. The Ukrainian army reported the bombardment of nine other towns in the region across the Dnieper from the plant.

  • UN nuclear watchdog awaits clearance from officials to visit plant “to help stabilize the nuclear safety and security situation”. Energoatom chief Petro Kotin told the Guardian that a visit by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) could take place before the end of the month, but Ukraine’s energy minister Lana Zerkal , told a local radio station that she was not convinced that Russia was negotiating in good faith.

  • The United States said that Russia does not want to recognize the serious radiological risk of the Ukrainian nuclear power plant in Zaporizhzhia, adding that this was why he had blocked the final draft of a nuclear non-proliferation treaty agreement. “Only the Russian Federation has decided to block consensus on a final document at the end of the Tenth Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Russia did so in order to block language that simply acknowledged the grave radiological risk at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine,” a statement from the US State Department said.

  • Concerns about the potential risk of radioactive leaks at the plant persist. Ukrainian and Russian authorities have issued new warnings about the risk of radioactive leaks, after bombings that the parties blame each other for. The Ukrainian energy operator warned that there were “risks of hydrogen leakage and spraying of radioactive substances”. Russia has ignored widespread international calls for the demilitarization of the region.

  • Ukrainians will likely experience their coldest winter in decades, said its gas chief, because the thermostats of its Soviet-era centralized heating systems have to be turned on later and turned off. Yurii Vitrenko, the head of state gas company Naftogaz, said indoor temperatures would be set at 17-18C, about four degrees cooler than normal, and he advised people to stock up on blankets and warm clothes when outside temperatures fall and beyond the winter average of -10C.

  • Germany is rebuilding gas stocks faster than expected despite drastic Russian supply cuts and should hit an early October target, the government said. Europe’s largest economy is heavily dependent on Russian gas and has rushed to bolster its reserves ahead of winter, crediting energy-saving measures in recent weeks and massive gas purchases from other suppliers .

  • EU foreign ministers are expected to suspend Russian tourist visa facilitation next week. The EU decision is not an outright ban, but would make obtaining travel documents much more complicated and expensive. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said a ban would lack the necessary backing. “I don’t think cutting relations with the Russian civilian population will help and I don’t think this idea will get the required unanimity,” he told Austrian television ORF on Sunday.

An excavator demolishes ruined buildings in Mariupol. Photography: AFP/Getty Images

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