(Bloomberg) -- The United Nation’s top nuclear official plans to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin as part of a sensitive diplomatic mission two years after the Kremlin’s seizure of Europe’s biggest atomic plant from Ukraine.

Russia’s International Atomic Energy Agency envoy confirmed in a statement that Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi will travel to the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Tuesday, where he’ll hold talks the following day about safety at the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant. Asked whether a meeting with Putin is on the agenda, Grossi said “this is the intention.” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said a meeting wasn’t ruled out, according to the Interfax news service.

“I think it is very important that we keep this high-level dialog,” Grossi said at a press briefing Monday in Vienna, adding that he doesn’t anticipate any “knee-jerk reactions” from IAEA member states that might question the timing of his visit.

Grossi had originally planned to visit Moscow following his Feb. 7 trip to Zaporizhzhia, where an international inspections team has been stationed for 18 months. But that trip was quietly delayed. 

The Kremlin is now poised to receive Grossi during the IAEA’s quarterly board of governors meeting, which began Monday, where diplomats are expected to pass a resolution of censure over Russia’s continued occupation of the plant. 

Russian forces captured the Zaporizhzhia plant during the first week of the war and have held it since. Russia’s state-owned Rosatom has claimed ownership over plant — home to six reactors built to supply a fifth of Ukraine’s electricity — since September 2022, amounting to the biggest nuclear heist in history. 

Building a new plant with Zaporizhzhia’s capacity would cost at least $40 billion. 

The IAEA wants to clarify the plant’s “future operating status,” Grossi said, adding “we need to get to the end of this without a nuclear accident.”

Concern over the Zaporizhzhia plant’s safety has persisted since the onset of the war. Its power lines have occasionally failed, forcing it to rely on back-up diesel generators. All six units are currently in a state of shutdown. 

“In the history of nuclear energy, this is an unprecedented situation and clearly not sustainable,” Grossi reported last week. “I remain extremely concerned about nuclear safety and security at the plant.”

(Updates with location of meeting in the second paragraph, details in the last)

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