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Ukraine nuclear plant loses power line again after shelling

Shelling once again threatened the safe operation of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, even as United Nations officials expressed cautious optimism that a permanent presence of its inspectors at the plant was helping to lower the risk of a nuclear disaster.

The plant lost the connection with its last remaining main external power line after shelling on Friday evening, forcing engineers to rely on a lower-voltage reserve line to power the cooling equipment needed to prevent meltdowns, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a statement.

Nuclear power plants must sometimes rely on external power drawn from the grid to cool the reactor cores and spent fuel. If the external power lines are cut, the Zaporizhzhia plant must turn to backup diesel generators, and if those malfunction or run out of fuel, a meltdown becomes possible.

After visiting the plant, Rafael Mariano Grossi, director of the agency, told a news conference on Friday that his biggest concern regarding the physical safety of the facility itself was related to a reliable connection to external power.


Nasa’s Artemis moon rocket delayed for weeks after fuel leak

For the second time in a week, Nasa on Saturday aborted an attempt to launch its giant, next-generation rocketship, citing a stubborn fuel leak that the space agency said could delay the debut mission of its moon-to-Mars Artemis programme by at least several weeks.

Preflight operations were called off for the day about three hours before the 2.17pm EDT liftoff time (2am on Sunday, Singapore time) targeted for the 32-storey-tall Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and its Orion capsule from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

The uncrewed test flight, aimed at launching the capsule out to the moon and back, was to have marked the inaugural voyage of both the SLS and Orion a half century after the last lunar mission of Apollo, forerunner of the Artemis programme.


Wildfire prompts evacuation of thousands of US residents

A rapidly moving fire in Northern California had burned about 1,620 hectares of land by Saturday morning and prompted evacuations of thousands of residents, some of whom were also injured.

The blaze, called the Mill Fire, started on Friday nearly 370km north of Sacramento.

By Saturday morning, it was about 20 per cent contained, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.


Ukrainian wins top photojournalism prize for Mariupol coverage

Ukrainian photojournalist Evgeniy Maloletka won the Visa d'Or, one the profession's most prestigious prizes on Saturday, for his work during the devastating Russian siege of Mariupol.

Maloletka, visibly moved, dedicated his prize to the Ukrainian people, at a ceremony in the southern French city of Perpignan.

The 35-year-old journalist, who works for the Associated Press news agency, was - along with his AP colleague video journalist Mstyslav Chernov, one of the first journalists to enter Mariupol on Feb 23, an hour before the first Russian bombs fell.


City, Liverpool frustrated, Tottenham maintain strong start

Champions Manchester City and Liverpool were both held to draws in the Premier League on Saturday leaving Arsenal on top of the table ahead of their game at Manchester United on Sunday.

Liverpool were frustrated by Frank Lampard's determined Everton in a goalless Merseyside derby while City were held to a 1-1 draw at Steven Gerrard's Aston Villa.

Tottenham Hotspur maintained their fast start to the Premier League season with Harry Kane sealing a 2-1 victory over Fulham, and Chelsea left it late as they came back from a goal down to beat West Ham United 2-1 at Stamford Bridge.


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