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UN inspectors visit Iraqi chemical plant, nuclear facility

UN inspectors visit Iraqi chemical plant, nuclear facility

UN inspectors in Iraq
United Nations inspectors continued their probe into Iraq’s weapons programme today, visiting a chemical plant and a nuclear facility.

A chemical team from the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) inspected the Tuwaitha Industrial Chemical Research Centre, a UN spokesman in Baghdad reported.

“Even though it was a Muslim day of rest and there was only a guard at the Centre, the site was made available to full inspection,” Hiro Ueki said. “All managers of the departments of the Centre, who arrived shortly after the inspection began, briefed the UNMOVIC team about the current activities of their departments.”

Meanwhile, two teams from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) requested access to a facility during non-standard hours at the former Tuwaitha nuclear complex, which now conducts civilian research in the non-nuclear field.

The inspectors “observed work-shift levels during this non-work day period,” Mr. Ueki said. They also visited the Shakyli stores, which is a facility for dual-use equipment from the past Iraqi nuclear programme, and carried out environmental gamma radiation surveys in the area.

Two more UNMOVIC inspectors arrived in Baghdad yesterday, bringing the total number of inspectors to 115 – 96 from UNMOVIC and 19 from the IAEA, Mr. Ueki said.