Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant during shelling
Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant during shellingZaporizhzhya NPP via YouTube/via REUTERS

IAEA inspectors revealed that upon visiting the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant on Thursday, they discovered that its physical integrity had been “violated.”

But they couldn't comment on specifics until they had completed their inspection.

They continued their tour on Friday as fierce fighting between Ukrainian and Russian troops continued near the plant, Europe’s largest.

The team was finally brought in after months of worry that the Russian occupied plant could turn into a nuclear disaster.

Both countries accuse each other for attacks on the site, with Ukraine blaming Russia for holding the nuclear plant and its engineers hostage and Moscow claiming that Kyiv has been shelling the facility, increasing the risk of a catastrophe.

IAEA head Rafael Grossi, who travelled with the team of 14 inspectors to the plant on Thursday, said: “[it was] obvious that the plant and the physical integrity of the plant has been violated several times.”

But he was not able to comment on whether the damage had been done on purpose or accidentally.

“I will continue to be worried about the plant until we have a situation which is more stable,” he said.

IAEA inspectors toured the entire facility, including control rooms, emergency rooms and diesel generators, meeting with the plant’s Ukrainian employees, who have been working under intense pressure since the site was occupied by Russia in March.

Russia and Ukraine have accused each other of shelling the nuclear installation, sparking fears of a nuclear accident.

Last week the plant was severed from Ukraine's power network for the first time in its four-decade history due to what Energoatom said were "actions of the invaders". The plant came back online the next day.

Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed for the team of independent inspectors to travel to Zaporizhzhia via Ukraine, in an apparent resolution of a dispute over whether inspectors should travel to the plant via Ukraine or Russia.

(Israel National News' North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Israel National News articles, however, is Israeli time.)