The head of a U.N. nuclear team traveling to Iran on Saturday (Jan 28, 2012) urged the country to work with his mission on probing Tehran’s alleged attempts to develop an atomic arms program, adding such cooperation is long overdue.The unusually blunt comments by International Atomic Energy Deputy Director General Herman Nackaerts reflected the importance the IAEA is attaching to the chief focus of the trip — ending more than three years of Iranian refusal to answer questions about such suspicions.
Diplomats said Iran had accepted the inclusion of two senior weapons experts — Jacques Baute of France and Neville Whiting of South Africa — with relatively little fuss. That suggests the Islamic Republic may be prepared to address some issues related to the allegations. Also on the team is Rafael Grossi, IAEA chief Yukiya Amano’s right-hand man. Any progress would be significant…Iran says it is enriching only to generate energy. But it has also started producing uranium at a higher level than its main stockpile — a move that would jump-start the creation of highly enriched, weapons-grade uranium, should it chose to go that route. And it is moving its higher-enriched operation into an underground bunker that it says is safe from attack.
Excerpt, UN nuclear team hopes for progess on probing alleged Iranian arms program, Associated Press, January 28, 2012