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The United States on Friday described as a “war crime” the attack launched by Russia last night against the Ukrainian nuclear power plant in Zaporizhia and considered it an example of the reckless way in which Moscow is carrying out its invasion of Ukraine.
This is what the American embassy in Ukraine said on its Twitter account and a senior defense official told the press on Friday.
The strongest condemnation was pronounced by the U.S. embassy, whose diplomats are now in Poland, and who in a message on Twitter stated: “It is a war crime to attack a nuclear power plant. Putin’s shelling of Europe’s largest nuclear plant takes his reign of terror one step further.”
The embassy added the hashtag #TheHague in its message, referring to the headquarters of the International Criminal Court (ICC), whose Office of the Prosecutor has already opened an investigation in Ukraine for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
In statements to the press on Friday, a senior defense official considered the attack on the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant, the largest in Europe, as an example of the reckless manner in which Russia is carrying out its invasion of Ukraine.
He recalled that nuclear plants are not built to withstand armed conflicts, and therefore considered that there is no excuse for the Russian offensive.
Last night there was a Russian attack on the Zaporizhia plant, where a fire broke out in one of its buildings. The blaze was put out by firefighters on Friday after a few hours of uncertainty.
According to the official, the United States has detected no radioactive leaks as a result of the Russian attack, an assessment with which Ukraine’s state nuclear regulator and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) concur.
The plant, in southeastern Ukraine, has been taken over by the Russian Army, although it is being managed by Ukrainian technical staff.
In the last few hours, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm spoke with her Ukrainian counterpart, German Galushchenko, about the attack.
As Granholm explained last night on Twitter, the Department of Energy is coordinating Washington’s response to the attack in consultation with the Department of Defense, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the White House.
NATO and several governments around the world have vehemently condemned what happened in Zaporizhia.