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UN Inspectors Delayed During Visit to Iraqi Weapons Site - 2002-12-13


United Nations weapons inspectors in Iraq used a hotline for the first time to call in senior Iraqi authorities, after they were delayed getting into a disease control center.

Inspectors toured an industrial facility called the Ibn al Haitham Center, which U.N. sources have linked to an Iraqi missile production project. U.N. resolutions limit the range of Iraq's missiles to 150 kilometers.

Another team made the first ever inspection of Iraq's Communicable Disease Control Center to check if the facility's equipment can be used for military as well as civilian purposes.

There, inspectors made their first use of a hotline to reach the senior Iraqi liaison official. A UN official said it was a newly declared site, and officials wanted to clarify tagging procedures for equipment.

This is the first time inspectors have worked on a Friday - the Muslim day of rest - since they returned to Iraq last month.

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