It was revealed on Tuesday by Ukraine’s nuclear energy operator that Russian personnel had been doing covert work at Europe’s largest nuclear power station. This could help explain Russia’s accusations that the Ukrainian military is preparing a “provocation” with a radioactive weapon.
The Russian minister of defense, Sergei Shoigu, made a baseless claim that Ukraine was getting ready to drop a dirty bomb on Russia. After speaking with his British, French, Turkish, and American counterparts over the weekend, Shoigu made the accusation. United States, Britain, and France all flatly dismissed it as “transparently fake.”
The Ukrainian government also discounted Moscow’s assertion, saying it was an attempt to divert attention from the Kremlin’s suspected preparations to explode a dirty bomb.
During the last week, Russian forces reportedly conducted covert construction work at the captured Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine, according to Energoatom, the Ukrainian state corporation that operates the country’s four nuclear power facilities.
According to a statement released by Energoatom on Tuesday, Russian officers in charge of the region have refused to let Ukrainian plant workers or monitors from the United Nations’ atomic energy watchdog into the facility.
RUSSIA AND UKRAINE AT WAR
Russian nuclear materials and radioactive waste are being held at the plant, and Energoatom “assumes” the Russians are preparing a terrorist act using these items. According to the report, the dry spent fuel storage facility at the plant houses 174 containers, each of which holds 24 spent nuclear fuel assembly assemblies.
The business warned that an explosion might contaminate hundreds of square kilometers of land with radioactivity.
They asked the International Atomic Energy Agency to investigate.
U.N. Security Council members discussed the claims of dirty bomb use behind closed doors on Tuesday, per a Russian request.
Vassily Nebenzia, Russia’s U.N. ambassador, sent a five-page letter to council members before the meeting, claiming that the Russian Ministry of Defense has information that the Institute for Nuclear Research of the National Academy of Sciences in Kyiv and the Vostochniy Mining and Processing Plant “have received direct orders from (President Volodymyr) Zelenskyy’s regime to develop such a dirty bomb,” and that “the works are at the concluding stage.”
This activity “may be carried out with the cooperation of the Western countries,” Nebenzia said the ministry was informed. He also said that Russia would consider the use of a dirty bomb to be an act of nuclear terrorism, and that Kyiv’s leadership and their Western allies “would take full responsibility for all the consequences.”
Reporters asked Russia’s deputy U.N. ambassador Dmitry Polyansky what evidence Russia had that Zelenskyy gave orders to construct a “dirty bomb” after the meeting concluded. It’s intelligence data,” he said in response.
During a phone call, “we shared it with peers who have the requisite level of clearance,” he explained. Everyone who wanted to realize the threat was real could have done so. Those who wish to dismiss it as Russian disinformation will do so nonetheless.
After hearing rumors of a “dirty bomb,” Polyansky indicated the IAEA may dispatch inspectors to the scene.
The United Kingdom, France, and the United States all made it plain that “this is a transparently false claim” and “pure Russian propaganda,” as the United Kingdom’s deputy U.N. ambassador James Kariuki told reporters after the meeting. Ukraine, he claimed, had “made it apparent it has nothing to conceal,” and “IAEA inspectors are on the way.”
Similarly, Russia has requested that a commission be formed by the Security Council to look into allegations that the United States and Ukraine are breaking the convention banning the use of biological weapons in Ukraine’s laboratories.
Russia’s U.N. ambassador, Vassily Nebenzia, made the unfounded claim that secret American labs in Ukraine were engaging in biological warfare shortly after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24. This accusation was flatly repudiated by the United States and Ukraine.
On Thursday, Russia will convene a meeting of the Security Council to discuss the claims against Ukraine’s biological facilities.
The Russian government has requested that the West take seriously its warning about a supposed dirty bomb plot in Ukraine.
Dmitry Peskov, a spokesperson for the Kremlin, has called the disregard for Moscow’s warning “unacceptable in view of the nature of the danger that we have talked about.”
As Peskov continued his remarks to the assembled media, he said, “We again highlight the grave risk presented by the plans concocted by the Ukrainians.”
In response to Russia’s accusations that Ukraine may use a dirty bomb, Vice President Joe Biden was asked at the White House on Tuesday if Russia is planning to deploy a tactical nuclear weapon.
Biden told reporters, “I spent a lot of time today talking about that.”
Furthermore, the president was pressed on whether or not the allegations of a Ukrainian dirty bomb constituted a false-flag operation.
The use of a tactical nuclear weapon “would be an enormously serious error,” Biden added. I can’t say for sure that it’s a false-flag operation just yet, but doing so would be a huge blunder.
Although dirty bombs may not cause as much damage as a nuclear weapon, they nonetheless represent a threat of widespread radioactive contamination.