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Iraq lets U.N. experts check monitoring equipment By Hassan Hafidh BAGHDAD, Nov 2 - Iraq has allowed a United Nations team to visit Iraqi weapons sites to maintain surveillance equipment, a U.N. official said on Monday. Caroline Cross, special assistant to the director of the Baghdad Monitoring and Verification Centre, also said that teams from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) had gone out to sites for a second successive day. "A technical team from UNSCOM (the U.N. Special Commission disarming Iraq) has gone out to maintain monitoring equipment," Cross told Reuters. "They have IMD officials to go along with them," she said. The Iraqi Monitoring Directorate is the Iraqi body liaising with UNSCOM. Iraq said on Saturday it was halting all cooperation with UNSCOM inspectors and monitors until the Security Council reviewed the lifting of sanctions and removed Richard Butler, the chairman of UNSCOM, which is in charge of scrapping Iraq's chemical and biological weapons. But Baghdad said the Vienna-based IAEA, the U.N. watchdog for nuclear weapons, could continue its monitoring work in Iraq. "IAEA teams have gone out to monitor sites as usual," Cross said. UNSCOM and the IAEA maintain surveillance cameras in hundreds of Iraqi sites suspected of producing weapons of mass destruction. Cross said it would be some time before instructions came from UNSCOM headquarters on what to do next. The Security Council has unanimously condemned Iraq's move and demanded that Baghdad end its non-cooperation "immediately and unconditionally". Iraq on Sunday rejected the council's condemnation. Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz said on Sunday Baghdad would not back down on its decision, no matter what the rest of the world threatened to do in retaliation. It had already decided in August, at the start of the latest stand-off, not to allow the U.N. experts to inspect any new sites. The Security Council has entrusted UNSCOM and the IAEA with verifying that Iraq has destroyed its weapons of mass destruction so that international sanctions imposed for its 1990 invasion of Kuwait can be lifted. -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email firstname.lastname@example.org, NOT the whole list. Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html