American report: Iraq trying to buy component to produce nuclear weapons
Iraq is making efforts to buy special equipment used in producing fuel for nuclear weapons, The Washington Times reported Friday.
Procurement agents from Iraq's covert nuclear-arms program were detected as they tried to buy stainless-steel tubing, uniquely used in gas centrifuges and a key component in making the material for nuclear bombs, from an unknown supplier, administration officials "familiar with intelligence reports," told the newspaper.
American intelligence agencies believe the tubing is an essential component of Iraq's plans to enrich radioactive uranium to the point where it could be used to fashion a nuclear bomb. The covert nuclear-acquisition effort was detected last month, and reports about the activities were then circulated to senior Bush administration policy officials.
"This is only one sign that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear-weapons program," one official was quoted as saying by The Washington Times. Earlier this year, Turkish military intelligence informed the Pentagon that Iraq was believed to have at least one nuclear device. Officials said the report could not be confirmed. (Albawaba.com)
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