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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

UN inspectors to visit new Iranian enrichment plant later this month

5 October 2009 – Inspectors from the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will visit a newly disclosed uranium enrichment facility in Iran on 25 October, the world body said.

The visit was announced following talks between IAEA Director General Mohammed ElBaradei and Iranian authorities in Tehran yesterday, during which they discussed arrangements for the agency’s access to the plant which is under construction in Qom.

The Vienna-based IAEA was informed late last month by Iran about the construction of a new enrichment plant.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said last week that the facility violates Security Council resolutions because of the delay in its disclosure.

During his recent talks in New York with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Mr. Ban repeated his call for the country to implement Security Council resolutions and cooperate with the IAEA on resolving outstanding concerns regarding its nuclear programme.

Iran has stated that its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes, but some other countries contend it is driven by military ambitions. The issue has been of international concern since the discovery in 2003 that the country had concealed its nuclear activities for 18 years in breach of its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Meanwhile, a nuclear fuel supply concept for the Tehran Research Reactor was agreed during talks held in Geneva on 1 October between Iranian officials and representatives from China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The concept will be discussed further at a technical meeting, hosted by the IAEA, on 19 October.

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