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The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is deploying its teams to Ukraine's four nuclear power plants to reduce the risk of major accidents as Russia's war against Ukraine continues, the agency's head, Rafael Grossi, said, as quoted by the Associated Press.

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The IAEA already has a permanent presence at the largest nuclear power plant in Ukraine and Europe - in Zaporozhye, which has been controlled by Russian forces since March, AP reminds. 

The international agency will deploy at least 11 of its experts to each of the plants, including the shuttered Chernobyl nuclear power plant, which suffered a deadly nuclear accident in 1986 that spread radioactive waste over much of Europe.

Rafael Grossi arrived in Ukraine this week to deploy IAEA personnel to every nuclear facility in the country.

On Wednesday he visited Chernobyl, and on Tuesday - Rivne.

The officials will stay as long as the Ukrainian government asks, he said.

IAEA experts in Ukraine will deepen technical expertise at each plant to prevent nuclear accidents.

They will monitor nuclear safety and security systems.

The IAEA was unable to stop the shelling of the Zaporizhia NPP

The Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is on the front line of the 11-month-long fighting between Ukrainian and Russian forces.

Russian forces seized the facility in March and it has come under repeated fire since then.

All six reactors have been shut down, although the plant is still connected to the grid for safety reasons.

The head of the IAEA insists on the creation of a protection zone around the headquarters in Zaporozhye, where the international agency has been present for more than four months.

Russian invasion of Ukraine

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)