Russian President Vladimir Putin and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron held a telephone conversation on Friday to discuss the situation in Ukraine, the Kremlin said in a statement.
During the telephone conversation, Putin stressed that the “systematic shelling by the Ukrainian army” of the territory of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant (NPP) creates the risk of a catastrophe that could lead to massive radiation pollution.
“The discussion focused on various aspects of the situation around Ukraine. Vladimir Putin, in particular, emphasized that regular attacks on the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant by the Ukrainian military create the risk of a major nuclear disaster that could lead to radiation contamination of a number territories,” the statement said.
Ukraine and Russia have recently traded accusations over the bombing of the Zaporizhzhia NPP, which is one of Europe’s largest nuclear power plants and produces a quarter of Ukraine’s total electricity.
In the telephone conversation, Putin and Macron noted the importance of sending an IAEA mission to the Zaporizhzhia NPP as soon as possible to assess the real situation in the country, the statement said.
“Both leaders noted the importance of sending an IAEA mission to the power plant as soon as possible to allow experts to assess the situation on the ground. The Russian side confirmed its readiness to provide the necessary assistance to the agency’s inspectors ,” the Kremlin said.
Vladimir Putin also said that Russia had invited experts from the UN Secretariat and the International Committee of the Red Cross to visit the detention center in Yelenovka, where a large number of Ukrainian prisoners of war died after a rocket attack by the Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Putin also briefed Macron on the implementation of the wheat export agreement signed in Istanbul last month, underlining that there are still obstacles to the export of Russian food and fertilizer to world markets.
“The Russian president also briefed the French leader on the progress of the package agreement signed on July 22 in Istanbul to facilitate the export of Ukrainian grain from Black Sea ports and the export of Russian food and fertilizers to world markets,” the statement said. .
Putin pointed to remaining obstacles to Russian exports above, adding that the situation is doing little to solve global food security problems.
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