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Iraq: UN inspectors press forward, visiting missiles sites and storage facilities

Iraq: UN inspectors press forward, visiting missiles sites and storage facilities

UN inspectors in Iraq
Just days before the top United Nations disarmament officials are to give an update to the Security Council, UN monitors in Iraq continued their inspections of various sites around the country today.

Missile teams from the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) went to the Ibn Firnas Company, which is involved in the design and manufacturing of remotely piloted vehicles (RPVs), and the Samarra East Airfield, which is involved in the flight test of RPVs. UN teams also visited the Al Mamoun site that manufactures solid propellant rocket motors and the Al Fekar Factory, which makes parts and subsystems of rockets.

"These inspections were conducted to verify Iraq's declarations and establish a comprehensive monitoring mechanism," UNMOVIC spokesman Hiro Ueki said in Baghdad.

In other inspections, an UNMOVIC biological team visited a Military Hospital approximately 160 kilometres southwest of Baghdad and carried out a ground survey in part of the hospital compound. Another biological team carried out an inspection of a seed-processing facility approximately 20 kilometres east of An Nu'maniyah.

Meanwhile, an UNMOVIC chemical team inspected the 7 Nissan stores in southeast Baghdad, the central stores for Iraq's pesticide inventory in 15 Governorates.

Outside Mosul, a multidisciplinary team inspected the Mosul Raiyard AR Rayanihay RR Siding, where goods are transported from and to train truck.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) held no-notice inspections at Um Al Maarik and Badr State Establishment. "The inspections were undertaken to establish the current disposition of machine tools monitored by the IAEA," Mr. Ueki said, adding that another IAEA team conducted a car-borne radiation survey along and near the Tigris River just south of Baghdad.