The IAEA has information about the training of Russian drone operators at the Zaporizhzhia NPP. Experts on the spot, however, did not see the evidence

Kostia Andreikovets

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in its report dated May 3, 2024, stated that it had read information about the location of a Russian training center for drone operators at the occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.

The agency is familiar with the information that there may be a base for training drone operators near the sixth reactor and the training center for the stationʼs personnel, but the report does not mention that it is specifically Russian.

IAEA experts at the site "did not see any evidence of drone launches or the presence of launch pads around the perimeter."

The report only says that on Tuesday, April 30, the agencyʼs experts heard more than a hundred shots. The Russians said they allegedly fired at drones flying near the stationʼs training center. Experts could not reliably confirm the drone attack. There were no damages or injuries.

  • In April 2024, the Zaporizhzhia NPP was attacked by drones at least three times, the IAEA reported. This happened for the first time since November 2022. The Russians blamed Ukraine for the attacks. Instead, the Ukrainian General Staff stated that the Russians were planning another provocation at the station "under a foreign flag."
  • The main intelligence department of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine told "Babel" that Russia uses the territory of the Zaporizhzhia NPP as a training ground for FPV drone crews. The Arkhangel UAV operator school works there. The drones are launched near the sixth reactor, the personnel training center and the cooling pond. Some of them fell on the territory of the ZNPP itself, and some hit the equipment and the dome of the power unit.
  • On May 2, the GUR showed alleged video evidence that Russian troops are using kamikaze drones over nuclear reactors at the Zaporizhzhya NPP. The agency published a video of an enemy FPV drone flying over the ZNPP power units. The video has the marking UT4D.TT, that is, it was delivered to the troops by the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation.