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 Sunday, 19 January, 2003, 01:19 GMT
Iraqi scientist denies nuclear link
Faleh Hassan
Faleh Hassan compared the inspectors to the Mafia
Iraqi scientist Faleh Hassan has denied any link between Baghdad's former nuclear programme and documents found at his home by United Nations disarmament experts on Thursday.

The following are excerpts from his statements to the press:

The inspectors put their hands on personal documents which have nothing to do with the former [nuclear] programme.

We did research on laser isotopic separation, and in 1988 we reached the conclusion that this technology was very difficult given our infrastructure, so the decision was taken to abandon that approach.

How could such a small country as Iraq do these things?

Unfortunately, [International Atomic Energy Auth Director General Mohamed] ElBaradei made hasty declarations. He was in so much of a hurry he gave a statement which was not true.

It is like someone putting oil on a fire, which is wrong and not responsible.

This document is mostly personal, and has nothing at all to do with any weapons of mass destruction. It has already been declared [to the authorities] and has no value.

ElBaradei should not rush issues when circumstances are tense. I'm ready to go through the papers with him page by page.

I don't trust Unmovic. I don't trust the IAEA. They want to create a problem at a very critical time.

[During the inspection] when the official from the National Monitoring Directorate went away for three minutes, an inspector turned to me and asked "Are you seeking an alternative?"

She said they were ready to have my wife cared for outside Iraq and that I could accompany her. I said no thank you.

Even if I have instructions from my government I will never leave my country. Never ever.


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18 Jan 03 | Middle East
18 Jan 03 | Media reports
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