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Ukraine attempts to attack Europe's largest nuclear power plant: Russia

File photo shows a Russian soldier guarding the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant. (Photo by AP)

Russia has said that Ukraine has waged an unsuccessful attack against Europe's largest nuclear power plant, which is under Moscow's control.

Reporting on Friday, Russia Today cited local authorities as saying that Ukraine had launched three drones against the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) earlier in the day.

The facility, which was built in the Soviet-era, has been in Russia's hands since last March, a month after Moscow launched a "special military operation" against Ukraine.

Moscow says it has started the operation to protect Ukraine's pro-Russian population in the southern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk against persecution by the Kiev regime.

Ever since Russia's capture of ZNPP, both sides of the conflict have been blaming the other for the attacks against the plant, which raises the risk of causing nuclear contamination in the region.

Russia has even described Kiev's attacks against the facility as "nuclear terrorism."

Describing the Friday attack, RT said Russia's air defenses had "intercepted" the drones, which were "armed with explosive warheads." "One of the drones exploded upon crashing, while two were recovered mostly intact," it added.

"Ukraine blew up the Nova Kakhovka hydroelectric power station in order to distract the world from the failures of their much-publicized counteroffensive," the Zaporozhye authorities said in a statement, referring to an earlier incident.

"Now, they need another disaster, this time a nuclear one, for which they will again blame Russia," they added.

On Wednesday, Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Moscow would "respond extremely harshly to any attacks by Ukraine" on the power plant itself, its infrastructure, or the town of Energodar where its employees live.

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