The head of the UN’s nuclear agency, Rafael Grossi, says a huge nuclear power plant occupied by Russia during its invasion of Ukraine is “completely out of control”.

Rafael Grossi was quoted by the Associated Press news agency as saying the Zaporizhzhia plant needed an inspection and repairs.

Europe’s biggest nuclear plant is dangerously close to the fighting.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken accused Russia earlier this week of using the plant, which it overran in March, as a military base to launch attacks on Ukrainian forces.

Ukrainian officials have said Russians station troops and store military hardware on the grounds of the power station on the Dnipro river in the south of Ukraine.

But a Russian-installed official in the region told Reuters news agency that Ukrainian forces were using Western-supplied weapons to attack the plant.

Yevgeny Balitsky said officials were ready to show Mr Grossi’s agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), how Russians were guarding the nuclear facility while Ukrainians were allegedly attacking it.

When Russia seized the plant, its shelling of buildings there caused an international outcry.

The plant is still operating, with Ukrainian staff under Russian control.

Credit: BBC

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