Live blog | Russia supplies nuclear reactors to Hungary

International27 Aug ’22 08:49Author: BNR Web Editor

It is day 185 of the war in Ukraine. In this live blog you will find all the latest updates on the ongoing conflict and all its consequences.

Russia supplies Hungary with two nuclear reactors

08:45 | Hungary gets two new Russian nuclear reactors. The Russian nuclear power giant Rosatom will build the reactors in the near future, says Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto on Facebook. “Let the construction begin!” he says in a video.

It concerns an expansion of the existing nuclear power plant in Paks, 130 kilometers south of Budapest. It is the only nuclear power plant in Hungary, which currently accounts for 40 percent of the national electricity demand. With the two new reactors, which are added to the existing four from the Soviet era, the Paks plant will double its capacity.

Hungary and Russia already agreed on the enlargement in 2014. Russia’s nuclear industry is exempt from sanctions imposed on the country because of its invasion of Ukraine.

Russia is blocking the UN nuclear disarmament agreement

07:30 | Russia on Friday (local time) prevented the adoption of a joint declaration at the end of the United Nations Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Moscow called parts of the text “overtly political”.

The 191 signatories of the NPT, which aims to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons, promote complete disarmament and promote cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear energy, have been meeting at UN headquarters in New York since 1 August.

Some countries and NGOs hoped to set binding deadlines for the phasing out of nuclear weapons in the world. This required unanimity among the 191 signatories. But despite a month of negotiations and a final session that was postponed by several hours on Friday, “the conference is not able to reach an agreement,” conference president Gustavo Zlauvinen of Argentina said after Russia intervened.

For example, the Russian envoy, Igor Vishnevetsky, condemned a lack of “balance” in the draft final text of more than 30 pages. The representative did not provide details, but the text contained four references to the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant in Ukraine. Sources close to the negotiations say Moscow was particularly opposed to these clauses.

The Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant is supplying power again

07:00 | The Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant is once again supplying electricity to Ukraine, according to state energy company Energoatom. The two operating reactors were connected to the power grid one by one on Friday.

Europe’s largest nuclear power plant was disconnected from the grid for the first time in history on Thursday. It was due to damage to the high voltage cable that supplies the complex with electricity. Ukrainian authorities say the fire was caused by Russian shelling.

The first reactor was connected on Friday at 14:04 local time, the second at 21:15. The nuclear plant covered 20 percent of Ukraine’s electricity needs before the war.

According to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, “a nuclear disaster was narrowly avoided thanks to an emergency generator.” He warned again on Friday about the “risky and dangerous” situation at the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant.

The international community is very concerned about the security around the facility, which has come under fire several times in recent weeks. Ukraine and Russia blame each other for the attacks. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) wants to send experts to inspect, but it is not yet clear when this will be possible.

Zelenski: 1 million tons of food exported

06:30 | Ukraine has exported 1 million tons of agricultural products by sea since the grain deal, President Volodymyr Zelensky reported. The agreement was signed a month ago and ended the blockade of Ukrainian ports on the Black Sea.

A total of 44 cargo ships have departed from Ukrainian ports to 15 countries since August 1. Zelensky repeated in his evening announcement on Friday that the goal is to export 3 million tons per month. It is half of the monthly amount before the war.

Ukraine’s seaborne exports came to a standstill due to the Russian invasion at the end of February, resulting in rising food prices worldwide. Thanks to the grain agreement, cargo ships can safely dock and dock in Ukraine again. The agreement between Ukraine and Russia was concluded with the help of Turkey and the UN.

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