Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Iraqi nuclear materials

There has been substantial misrepresentation of the IAEA report on Iraq.

The Independent alleges the report states that "nuclear material" has gone missing. This is not true at all. The reports states that some equipment is unaccounted for but that the nuclear material Iraq was known to have has been mostly transferred to safety in the US and the remainder was inspected by the IAEA as recently as August:
The Agency was able to verify the presence of the nuclear material subject to safeguards.
The intention of the report appears to be to seek clarification on verification issues with the Iraqi Government. Their concerns may turn out to be unwarranted.

The report also notes the Iraq Government's request for assistance from the IAEA in dismantling and decontaminating nuclear facilities. Nuclear sites are in the process of being decomissioned so it is possible that this is all just poor comunication between the IAEA and the Iraqi Government.

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