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Iran to Allow IAEA Inspectors into Nuclear Plant

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Iran says it will allow inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency into its newly disclosed uranium enrichment plant.

Iran's nuclear chief, Ali Akbar Salehi, said Saturday on Iranian state television the timing of the visit will be worked out with the IAEA.

Earlier, a top aide to Iran's Supreme Leader said the Iranian nuclear facility should be operational soon.

The chief of staff to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told Iran's Fars News Agency that "God Willing, the new plant will be operational soon and make the enemy blind."

On Friday, U.S. President Barack Obama and other Western leaders accused Iran of building a secret nuclear plant and insisted the IAEA have immediate access to ensure it is not being built to produce nuclear weapons.

Iran denied the facility has been a secret.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran complied with IAEA rules by informing the agency early enough that the facility near the holy Shi'ite city of Qum was under construction.

In Israel Saturday, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said the newly disclosed atomic facility was proof Iran is seeking nuclear weapons.  He said he hopes world powers will give an "unequivocal" response when representatives from Germany, the U.S., Britain, France, China and Russia meet with Iranian officials in Geneva on October 1.

Israel has described Iran's nuclear program as a threat to the Jewish state and has not ruled out any options in preventing Iran from acquiring atomic weapons.

The United States and its allies accuse Iran of working to produce a nuclear weapon.  Iran says its atomic program is for peaceful purposes, to generate electric power.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.


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