"Everything is possible": Chernyk explains under what conditions Russia may agree to return ZNPP to Ukraine

Expert says whether Russia can return Zaporizhzhia NPP to Ukraine. Source: DW

It would be a great victory for Ukraine to regain control of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in Enerhodar, which was illegally seized by Russian troops at the beginning of the invasion. Russia may agree to return the plant if it is pressured by China.

This opinion was expressed by military expert Petro Chernyk on OBOZ.Talk on Monday, June 17. According to him, China is a very serious player and it has the "keys to the heart" of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin.

Chernik explained that Russians buy a huge amount of microelectronics from China, without which it is impossible to build missiles and other weapons. In addition, China is now perhaps the largest hub of the aggressor state for gas sales.

"Although the Chinese don't really need that gas that much, because they are seriously looking towards renewable energy. Of course, at this moment they still need it, but the question is at what price. We realize that Muscovy exists as long as it has a freely convertible currency. Western markets are gradually closing, though not to the fullest extent, because, unfortunately, Turkey trades with them, as well as the Baltics and even Poland. But the scale matters," the expert said.

If Moscow returns ZNPP to Ukraine's control, it would be a victory both in the territorial and energy sense.

"And if Zaporizhzhia NPP, which is the largest in Europe, were to return to Ukraine's control, it would be a huge victory for us. Both in the territorial sense and in the energy sense. We need power generation reserves," Chernyk added.

As a reminder, one of the key points of the communiqué signed following the Peace Summit in Switzerland is the return of ZNPP to Ukraine's control. The document emphasizes that the plant should operate safely and securely and should be under full sovereign control of Ukraine. "This is the only way to restore nuclear and radiation safety of Zaporizhzhia NPP, as well as its protection," Energoatom said.

According to Energy Minister Herman Halushchenko, a lot of work will have to be done after ZNPP returns to Ukrainian control. It will take years to restart all six power units. Currently, ZNPP is in such a state that it will be difficult to restart even one power unit from a technical point of view.

As reported by OBOZ.UA, the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine has information that weapons elements from China are entering the Russian market. Similar information comes from the intelligence agencies of partner countries.

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