Russia has allegedly attacked another nuclear power plant in Ukraine
Ukraine has announced that Russian forces struck the Pivdennoukrainsk nuclear power plant in Ukraine's southern Mykolaiv region in the early hours of Monday, Reuters has reported.
The Russian attack resulted in a blast about 1,000 feet (300 m) away from reactors and damaged buildings in the vicinity. The explosion also allegedly damaged a nearby hydroelectric plant and some transmission lines in the area.
The Defence Ministry of Ukraine shared a clip of the attack on Twitter.
Last night russian terrorists attempted to strike the South Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant in the Mykolaiv region. A missile fell 300 meters from the plant. https://t.co/aWhz8yNXWp— Defense of Ukraine (@DefenceU) ) September 19, 2022
Attacked but functioning
Ukraine's state nuclear energy company, Energoatom, has also published two images of the crater caused by the explosion at the site. In an image, a man standing by the crater try helping viewers understand the scale of the blast.
However, the energy company confirmed that all three units of the nuclear power plant were functioning normally, and there were no casualties in the attack.
The Mykolaiv region has been under attack from the Russian forces in recent weeks, but Russia has not responded to Ukraine's accusation. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said on messaging app, Telegram, "The invaders wanted to shoot again, but they forgot what a nuclear power plant is. Russia endangers the whole world. We have to stop it before it's too late," Reuters reported.
Similarities to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant
Ukraine's other nuclear energy power plant is located 155 miles (250 km) east of Mykolaiv, at Zaporizhzhia. The largest nuclear power plant in Europe, the Zaporizhzhia plant, is controlled by Russian forces but is operated by Ukrainian staff. Russian forces began targeting the power plant in the second week of their attacks in Ukraine.
As the Russian invasion has prolonged, both sides have blamed each other for shelling at the plant which has significant damage to the nearby buildings of the reactor as well as disrupted power lines. Earlier this month, the power plant was shut down amid concerns of a nuclear disaster.
Over the weekend, though, one of the four major power lines was repaired, and the reactor is now back online and is supplying power to Ukraine's grid, the UN nuclear watchdog said.
The Russian strikes are also being looked at as retaliation for losing ground in Ukraine. Over the past couple of weeks, Ukrainian forces have surged eastward, forcing Russians to flee from their positions and be on the defensive, a Bloomberg report said last week.
Last week, Russian forces hit power plants behind Ukrainian lines in the Kharkiv region, sending certain areas into blackouts. The Russian ministry of Defense has confirmed the withdrawal of troops from certain regions but only as part of redeployment in the east.
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