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"No Nuke Demilitarization" - Moscow

FILE: An overview of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine Taken 8.7.2022 Credit: Planet Labs PBC/Handout

Russia's Foreign Ministry on Thursday dismissed a proposal by United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres to demilitarise the area around the Russian-controlled Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine.

During a press briefing, Foreign Ministry spokesman Ivan Nechaev said the proposals were "unacceptable".

The Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant was captured by Russia in March, shortly after it ordered tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine in what it calls a "special military operation."

The facility remains near the frontlines, and has repeatedly come under fire in recent weeks, sparking fears of a nuclear disaster.

Both Ukraine and Russia have accused each other of shelling the plant.

The nuclear facility is the largest in Europe, and there are fears that the reactors and radioactive nuclear fuel could be hit and exposed by conflict, spreading radiation across the region, as was the case in 1986 when the Chernobyl nuclear plant, also in Ukraine, had an explosion following a test of its cooling system.