WW3 fears as Zaporizhzhia nuclear leak could trigger NATO’s war act

Ukraine: Leak at nuclear plant could invoke NATO Article 5

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Tensions remain sky-high at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant – Europe’s largest plant – after the UN’s visit following shellings and fighting that could have provel fatal. To avoid further attacks around the Ukrainian plant and the potential spread of lethal radiation, the United Nations have suggested sending peacekeepers. Major General Chip Chapman warns that “depending on where the wind blows”, radiation could reach NATO territory and escalate into a full-blown military response against Russia.

He told Times Radio: “We know that security pillars have all been compromised to an extent at the nuclear power plant.

“But there isn’t a big radiation element at the moment.

“And of course, if it does leak then from a NATO perspective, depending on where the wind blows, that could be seen as an article 5 act of war if NATO chose to see it.”

According to Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Institute, radioactive particles from the Zaporizhzhia could affect EU countries – who are all part of the NATO alliance. Countries like Belarus, Lithuania, Estonia, Letonia, Poland, Romania, Moldova, Hungary, and Slovakia could see radiation spread, according to the Institute’s simulation conducted under the meteorological conditions of August 15-18, 2022.

“Pending the end of the conflict and re-establishment of stable conditions there is an urgent need for interim measures to prevent a nuclear accident arising from physical damage caused by military means,” a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) warned.

The report also said the agency is “still gravely concerned about the situation” at the plant after “witnessing shelling in the vicinity” of the plant, “in particular on September 3 when the team was instructed to evacuate the ground level of the Administrative Building.”

When asked what else the international community can do to help protect the Ukrainian staff working at the plant, General Chip Chapman said: “Well, not really.

“Because obviously, the two UN inspectors are still there after the IAEA did their formal and larger inspection”, he said, adding the Russian shelling on the plant is part of “Putin’s ploy – a deterrence by fear.”

 

“And of course, it should be that the moral authority of the UN is the thing which gets Russia to disengage with that,” Mr Chapman said

“But as we well know, the UN is largely a forum where the interests of the larger, more dominant powers are in the fall and other states coalesce around their interests as we’ve seen, for example, in bizarre states like Syria and North Korea, acknowledging the new form of the Donetsk and Luhansk at being independent states as so-called form their perspective.”

To stave off a Chernobyl-style nuclear disaster, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called for a demilitarised zone around the plant that would involve the withdrawal of Russian occupying troops.

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The IAEA’s director general Rafael Mariano Grossi, who led an inspection of the Zahparizhzhia nuclear plant warned of the potential of an imminent nuclear disaster.

He said: “We are playing with fire and something very, very catastrophic could take place.

“This is why in our report, we are proposing the establishment of a nuclear safety and security protection zone limited to the perimeter and the plant itself,” Mr Grossi added.

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