Russia says contacts with UN watchdog over Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant are ‘constructive’

MOSCOW (Reuters): Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Thursday that contacts with the UN nuclear watchdog over safety at the Russian-controlled Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant in Ukraine were “constructive” and showed some promise.

The Zaporizhzhia plant, which Russia seized shortly after its Feb. 24 invasion, was again rocked by shelling last weekend, prompting renewed calls from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to create a protection zone around it to prevent a nuclear disaster.

The head of the UN nuclear watchdog met a Russian delegation in Istanbul on Wednesday to discuss safety at the plant, which both Ukraine and Moscow have accused each other of shelling.