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No Diversion Of Nuclear Material In Iraq, Says UN

No Diversion Of Nuclear Material In Iraq, Says UN Agency

The United Nations atomic watchdog agency has completed its annual inspection of remaining nuclear materials in Iraq to ensure that they conform to the country's safeguard obligations against the spread of weapons under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and has found no diversion of material.

The inspection by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is separate from earlier UN Security Council-mandated investigations which probed whether ousted leader Saddam Hussein was developing weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). Those checks ceased in mid-March 2003 shortly before the war.

The material, natural or low-enriched uranium, is consolidated at a storage facility near the Tuwaitha complex, south of Baghdad.

The two-day inspection was conducted with the logistical and security assistance of the Multinational Force, the Office of the UN Security Coordinator, and the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), the Vienna-based IAEA said in a statement today.

Every non-nuclear-weapon state party to the NPT that has declared holdings of nuclear material is required to undergo the annual Physical Inventory Verification. The inspectors verify the correctness of the state´s declaration, and that material has not been diverted to any undeclared activity. Such inspections have been performed in Iraq on a continuing basis.

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