Biden, Zelenksy call on Russia to return control of nuclear plant to Ukraine
President Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday called for control of the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station to be returned to Ukraine.
Driving the news: The two leaders during a phone call Thursday also called for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to gain access to the plant, according to a White House readout.
Why it matters: Shelling at the Zaporizhzhia — Europe's largest nuclear power station — has prompted widespread international worry and condemnation this month.
- Russia and Ukraine have both accused each other of being responsible for the shelling.
- U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres issued warnings earlier this month that shelling at the plant was "suicidal" and could "lead to disaster."
The big picture: Russian forces captured the plant in March and have kept control of it since then. The plant has been kept operational by its Ukrainian staff.
State of play: During a call with French President Emmanuel Macron last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed to allow a team from the IAEA to inspect the plant.
- Ukraine has warned Russia could be planning a "false flag" attack at the plant.
- Ukraine's state nuclear company on Thursday announced that the plant had been fully disconnected from Ukraine's power grid.