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Italy: Strike on Zaporizhzhia plant 'worse than Chernobyl'

16 febbraio 2023 | 15.09
LETTURA: 1 minuti

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A missile strike or shelling of Ukraine's sprawling Zaporizhzhia plant would cause a worse disaster than Chernobyl in 1986, Italy has warned, calling for a safety zone to be established around the Russian-controlled site.

"We need a safety zone around Zaporizhzhia, Europe's largest nuclear plant, located in southern Ukraine," Italy's foreign minister Antonio Tajani told reporters at the foreign ministry on Thursday.

"If it were hit by a missile strike or shelling, even by mistake, it would cause a worse event than Chernobyl," Tajani said.

Tajani's comments came after Russia bombarded Ukraine with missile attacks early on Thursday, including a strike on its largest oil refinery of Kremenchuk in central Ukraine and after Nato allies pledged to boost artillery munitions and deliver at least 48 Leopard tanks to Kiev.

Russia has stepped up ground attacks across southern and eastern Ukraine in recent weeks and a major new offensive appears to be taking shape ahead of the first anniversary of its invasion, which began on 24 February last year.

Russia and the United Nations nuclear watchdog the International Atomic Energy Agency said last week they hope to make progress on creating safety zone around the Zaporizhzhia plant.

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