Russia has taken its aggression against Ukraine to a new level with the destruction of the Kakhovka hydroelectric dam in the south of Ukraine, the EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell said on Tuesday.
“Russia’s attacks against Ukrainian civilian critical infrastructure reached an unprecedented level today with the destruction of the dam at Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant,” Borrell said in a statement.
“The European Union condemns this attack in the strongest possible terms. It represents a new dimension of Russian atrocities and may constitute a violation of international law, notably international humanitarian law.”
Ukraine and its Western allies accused Russia of blowing up the dam in a deliberate war crime.
The Kremlin said it was Ukraine that had sabotaged the dam, to distract attention from a counteroffensive Moscow claims is faltering. Some Russian-installed officials said the dam had burst on its own.
The blast has put the lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians in danger and is affecting access to cooling water for the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant (ZNPP), Borrell said.
“With this desperate act, Russia is also continuing its reckless nuclear gamble by putting at risk the proper functioning of the safety and security systems of the ZNPP,” the European Commission’s vice president said.
The EU was in touch with Ukrainian authorities to see how it could help, Borrell added.