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25 February 2009

Syria dismisses IAEA uranium find at bombed site

from Reuters

Syria said on Tuesday U.N. inspectors' discovery of uranium traces at an alleged secret nuclear site was not "significant" as they maintain, suggesting the International Atomic Energy Agency's analysis was faulty.

Damascus also denied U.N. officials' account that IAEA sleuths had found graphite at the place where Washington says the Syrians had almost built a graphite-core reactor meant to yield weapons-grade plutonium, before Israel bombed it in 2007.

Syrian atomic energy agency director Ibrahim Othman dismissed the IAEA's finding that the uranium particles' chemical composition showed they did not come from munitions Israel used against the target known as al-Kibar.

"Chemical analysis can be played with the way you like. Always in laboratories there can be errors, anyone knows that," he told reporters after a tough exchange with inspectors at a briefing for the agency's 35-nation board of governors.

[Ahhh. Shades of the O.J. defense. Johnny Cochran is smiling somewhere. - Sarge]

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