IAEA says finds uranium at second Syria site

U.N. nuclear watchdog said that he had found traces of processed uranium at a second site in Syria, the agency said.

IAEA says finds uranium at second Syria site

The U.N. nuclear watchdog said that he had found traces of processed uranium at a second site in Syria, the agency said on Friday.

Inspectors who found uranium particles at the remote desert site a year ago also found similar traces at a small research reactor in the capital Damascus which the IAEA knew about and checks once a year, a IAEA report said. These traces were different from Syria's declared nuclear material inventory.

The International Atomic Energy Agency has been examining U.S. intelligence reports which claimed that Syria had built a nuclear reactor.

Friday's report, obtained by Reuters, said "anthropogenic natural uranium particles" had also turned up in environmental swipe samples taken from hot cells of the Miniature Neutron Source Reactor (MNSR) facility in Damascus.

Syria, told of the IAEA's discovery last month, sent a written response to the IAEA on Monday. But this did not not address the presence and origin of the particles and the U.N. watchdog was investigating a possible connection with the uranium particles found at the bombed site, the report said.

"It is clearly in Syria's interest to render to the agency the necessary cooperation and transparency if it wishes the agency to be able to corroborate its assertion about the nature of the Dair Alzour site," the report said.

Syria's declared nuclear site is the old research reactor and it has no known nuclear energy-generating capacity.

Syria had provided information regarding procurement of certain equipment and materials including a large quantity of graphite and large quantities of barium sulphate", a compound sometimes used as a radiation shield in nuclear structures.

Syria had said the procurement efforts were civilian and non-nuclear, relating to water purification, the steel industry and shielding material for radiation therapy centres.

Syria has said the uranium particles retrieved from samples taken at Dair Alzour came from depleted uranium used in Israeli munitions, an assertion dismissed by the IAEA.

Syria has also suggested IAEA analyses were faulty and that satellite imagery Washington gave to the IAEA was fabricated.

Reuters

Güncelleme Tarihi: 06 Haziran 2009, 14:19
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