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Ukraine Fears And Blame Over Fighting At Europe`S Largest Nuclear Power Plant


Mark Strassmann, Charlie D`Agata  

 

    The nuclear watchdog, IAEA, warning of a very real risk of a nuclear

    disaster at Europe`s largest nuclear power facility, seized by Russia in

    March, but kept running by Ukrainian staff since. The Ukrainian President

    accused Russia of using the plant as a weapon.

    MARK STRASSMANN: Tonight, the State Department is urging both Israelis and Palestinians to cool it.

    For the second day, tensions have exploded in the Middle East. Today, Israeli airstrikes targeted sites reportedly linked to militants in Gaza. The Palestinians say at least 24 people have been killed, some of them children. Militants responded by firing rockets into Israel, most of them intercepted by the country`s Iron Dome Defense System.

    Now to the war in Ukraine and worries of a new disaster following reports of shelling near Europe`s largest nuclear power plant.

    Charlie D`Agata is in the southern port city of Odesa.

    (Begin VT)

    CHARLIE D`AGATA: Smoke rises above the pylons at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, each side blaming the other for explosions that downed high- voltage power lines, prompting engineers to shut down a reactor.

    The nuclear watchdog, IAEA, warning of a very real risk of a nuclear disaster at Europe`s largest nuclear power facility, seized by Russia in March, but kept running by Ukrainian staff since. The Ukrainian President accused Russia of using the plant as a weapon.

    (PRESIDENT VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY speaking in foreign language)

    CHARLIE D`AGATA: "Any shelling of this facility is an open brazen crime and an act of terror," he said.

    The clashes at the plant came as Russian forces stepped up their offensive on frontline cities like Mykolaiv, which has come under the worst shelling since the first days of the war.

    This is all that is left at the regional government headquarters.

    This attack happened in the first few weeks of the war, but the bombardment has continued as this city remains a major strategic target for the Russian military.

    Even the hospital has provided no sanctuary against the onslaught in a series of nightly bombings and indiscriminate shelling of civilian areas. Ukrainian forces have been able to strike back with American-supplied HIMARS systems able to take out targets far behind Russian frontlines.

    But as the Russian Ministry of Defense released videos showing soldiers in combat, British Intelligence chiefs warn that the Russian military is almost certainly massing in southeastern Ukraine, concentrating forces and firepower for an all-out assault.

    Charlie D`Agata, CBS News, Odesa, Ukraine.

    (End VT)

    MARK STRASSMANN: Today, Cuba issued a call for help after lightning sparked a massive fire at a fuel depot. Look at that tower of flame. It happened about 60 miles east of Havana. Several firefighters are missing. More than 70 people reported hurt.

    END

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