UN arms experts continue inspections; Iraqi opposition conference to be held next month in London
UN arms experts visited the "Mother of Battles" complex south of Baghdad on the third day of renewed inspections.
Weapons experts headed to al-Yusifiya, 15 kilometres from the Iraqi capital, to inspect the "Mother of Battles" complex, the name given by Baghdad to the 1991 Gulf War.
AFP said the facility appeared to be part of Iraq's military industries.
All of the experts' visits since the relaunch of inspections Wednesday have been in the Baghdad area, although the inspectors expect to broaden their range in the coming days with the delivery of a first helicopter.
The choppers will be used to transport arms experts to remote areas and provide surveillance of suspect sites to ensure there is no movement in or out during inspections, UN spokesman Hiro Ueki said Friday.
Meanwhile, Iraqi opposition groups are scheduled to gather in London next month to review their role in any post-Saddam Hussein Iraq, an opposition spokesman said Friday.
About 300 participants from exiled Iraqi opposition factions, Arab and European states and the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council have been invited to attend the Dec. 13-15 event.
Iraqis opposed to Saddam see the meeting — to be held under U.S. auspices — as a vital step in establishing a democratic, pluralist government in the event the Iraqi ruler is ousted by American-led forces.
Hamed al-Bayati of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution, said more than 50 Iraqi opposition groups and organizations have been invited to take part in the conference. "We have prepared working papers for the conference on the transitional period and future of Iraq. We agreed on the establishment of a democratic, constitutional regime based on pluralism and federalism," he told AP. (Albawaba.com)
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