UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres speaks on the Russia-Ukraine conflict at the General Assembly emergency special session in New York, on Feb 28, 2022. (KENA BENTANCUR / AFP)
MOSCOW / UNITED NATIONS / VIENNA - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on April 26 and 28 respectively, a UN spokesman said Friday.
Guterres will visit Moscow on April 26 and have "a working meeting and lunch" with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for Guterres.
During his trip to Ukraine, Guterres will also have a working meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and meet with staff of UN agencies to discuss the scaling up of humanitarian assistance to Ukrainian people, Dujarric said.
The UN chief sent separate letters Tuesday afternoon to the permanent missions of Russia and Ukraine to the United Nations, asking Putin to receive him in Moscow and Zelensky to receive him in Kiev, Dujarric said on Wednesday.
This satellite image provided by Maxar Technologies shows cruiser Moskva in port Sevastopol in Crimea on April 7, 2022. (SATELLITE IMAGE ©2022 MAXAR TECHNOLOGIES VIA AP)
1 soldier onboard Moskva dead
One soldier died and 27 other crew members went missing when they were fighting for the survival of the Russian missile cruiser Moskva that sank in the Black Sea last week, the Russian Defense Ministry said Friday.
The remaining 396 crew members of the Moskva, the flagship of Russia's Black Sea Fleet, were evacuated to other ships in the area and delivered to Sevastopol, the ministry said in a statement.
According to a survey, the vast majority of the Moskva crew members want to continue to serve in the Black Sea Fleet
The ministry has provided all the necessary support and assistance to the families and friends of the deceased and missing, it added.
According to a survey, the vast majority of the Moskva crew members want to continue to serve in the Black Sea Fleet.
The Moskva was "seriously damaged" by the detonation of ammunition onboard as a result of a fire on April 13 and a day later it sank in stormy seas when it was being tugged to a port, the Russian Defense Ministry said.
The Ukrainian side said that its border guards used Neptune anti-ship cruise missiles to deliver "very serious damage" to the Moskva.
The Chernobyl nuclear plant, as seen in 2021, has suffered a power cut. (EFREM LUKATSKY / AP)
IAEA mission to visit Chernobyl plant
The International Atomic Energy Agency said Friday its expert mission would travel to Ukraine's Chernobyl nuclear power plant on April 26 to help ensure the facility's safety.
IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi will head the mission to "deliver vital equipment and conduct radiological and other assessments" at the Chernobyl plant, according to the agency's statement.
The IAEA's presence at Chernobyl will be of paramount importance for our activities to support Ukraine as it seeks to restore regulatory control of the plant and ensure its safe and secure operation
Rafael Mariano Grossi, IAEA Director General
The IAEA experts will also repair remote safeguards monitoring systems at the plant, which have not been transmitting data to the agency's headquarters in Vienna since the start of the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
"The IAEA's presence at Chernobyl will be of paramount importance for our activities to support Ukraine as it seeks to restore regulatory control of the plant and ensure its safe and secure operation," Grossi said, adding that the agency will send more missions to Chernobyl and other nuclear facilities in Ukraine in the coming weeks.
Russian forces had been in control of the Chernobyl plant for five weeks before withdrawing on March 31, according to the IAEA statement.
The Chernobyl plant, some 110 km north of the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, suffered one of the worst nuclear accidents in human history on April 26, 1986.
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