UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged Thursday that all military activities immediately stop at Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant as Russia and Ukraine traded blame for shelling at Europe's largest nuclear facility.
Guterres expressed grave concern about the unfolding situation in and around the nuclear station in southern Ukraine and implored all military forces and equipment stationed there to withdraw.
"Regrettably, instead of de-escalation, over the past several days there have been reports of further deeply worrying incidents that could, if they continue, lead to disaster," he warned in a statement. "I am calling for all military activities in the immediate vicinity of the plant to cease immediately and not to target its facilities or surroundings."
Russia is currently in control of the facility after seizing it in March from Ukraine, and the surrounding areas.
Guterres also emphasized the need to prevent any further deployments of military forces and equipment to the facility.
The appeal came as the UN Security Council prepares to hold an emergency meeting at Russia’s request later Thursday to discuss the situation at the plant.
Rafael Mariano Grossi, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, is slated to brief the Council about the security situation at the site.
The Zaporizhzhia station produces around 20% of Ukraine's electricity.
Russia took control of the facility March 4, roughly two weeks after beginning its offensive against Ukraine in late February.