Thank you Mr Chair,
I want to express shock and our deep concern regarding the destruction of the dam of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Power Plant, located in the temporarily occupied territory of the Kherson region. This is yet another act of destruction of critical Ukrainian infrastructure, resulting from Russia’s brutal aggression against Ukraine.
The water surging through the remains of the dam put settlements on both sides of the Dnipro River at risk of massive flooding. Thousands of Ukrainians are at risk and the flooding will cause enormous environmental damages.
Due to the decrease in the water level in the Kakhovka Reservoir, there is also a risk of an incident at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, as the plant might be deprived of water for crucial cooling (if the back-up systems fail). Thus far, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has said there is no immediate nuclear safety risk at the plant due to the destruction of the dam, and we commend the Agency for its continued monitoring of the situation and informing the international community as developments unfold.
We urge the occupant to do its utmost to reduce the damage and repair the dam. Everything must be done to avoid further damage. Our thoughts are with Ukraine and everybody affected by this disaster. Norway stands ready to assist in whatever way we can.
Let me again also repeat that the Russian Federation must withdraw its troops from Ukrainian territory and end this war.