Iraq Nuclear File: Key Findings

Inspections in Iraq

Iraq's Nuclear Weapon Programme

INVO's extensive inspection activities in Iraq between 1991 and 1998 resulted in a technically coherent picture of Iraq's clandestine nuclear programme. The programme was very well funded and was aimed at the indigenous development and exploitation of technologies for the production of weapons-grade nuclear material and production and manufacturing of nuclear weapons. IAEA report S/1997/779 to the UN Security Council provides a detailed overview of Agency activities in Iraq and its assessment of Iraq's clandestine nuclear weapon programme. An update and summary of this report can be found in S/1998/927 and S/1999/393. The reports cover all Agency activities in Iraq between 1991 and 1998.

This fact sheet is based upon these reports and highlights the components of Iraq's nuclear weapon programme, IAEA assessment of the past nuclear programme, and IAEA achivements.

I - Components of Iraq's nuclear weapon programme

II - Assessment of Iraq's past nuclear programme

III - IAEA Achievements in Iraq


I - Components of Iraq's nuclear weapon programme

Acquisition of weapons usable material


Indigenous production and overt procurement of uranium compounds

Iraq Nuclear Sites

Development of indigenous uranium enrichment capabilities

Electro-magnetic isotope separation (EMIS)

Gaseous diffusion uranium enrichment

Gas centrifuge enrichment


Intended diversion of research reactor fuel


Production and separation of plutonium

Weaponisation


Facilities


Nuclear sites found in Iraq

Research & Development


Nuclear Delivery System

Considered two options:


II - Assessment of Iraq's past nuclear programme

As of 16 December 1998, the following assessment could be made of Iraq's clandestine programme:


III - IAEA Achievements in Iraq


IRAQ
IAEA
  • Procurement and production of uranium compounds
  • Removed all known weapon usable materials
  • All known indigenous facilities capable of producing uranium compounds useful to a nuclear programme were destroyed during the Gulf War; IAEA inspected and completed the destruction of facilities; IAEA monitored the sites as part of their OMV activities.
  • Took custody of all known imported compounds and indigenously produced uranium compounds
  • Industrial-scale facilities for the production of uranium compounds suitable for fuel fabrication or isotopic enrichment
  • All known indigenous facilities capable of producing uranium compounds useful for fuel fabrication and for isotopic enrichment were destroyed during the Gulf War; IAEA inspected and completed the destruction of facilities; IAEA monitored the sites as part of their OMV activities.
  • R&D of indigenous uranium enrichment technologies
  • Destroyed, removed, or rendered harmless all known single-use equipment used in enrichment R&D
  • Destroyed all known facilities and equipment for the enrichment of uranium Subjected to ongoing monitoring and verification all facilities and known dual-use equipment capable of being used in enrichment R&D
  • Design and feasibility studies for an indigenous plutonium production reactor
  • Inspections revealed no indication that Iraq's plan for an indigenous plutonium production reactor proceeded beyond feasibility study.
  • R&D of irradiated fuel reprocessing technology
  • The relevant facilities at Tuwaitha used for irradiated fuel reprocessing R&D were destroyed during the Gulf War
  • R&D of weaponisation capabilities for implosion-based nuclear weapons
  • Destroyed the principal buildings of Al Atheer nuclear weapons development and production plant.
  • Destroyed, removed, or rendered harmless all known purpose-specific equipment
  • A "crash programme" aimed at diverting safeguarded research reactor fuel and recovering the HEU for use in a nuclear weapon
  • The chemical processing plant was destroyed during the Gulf War; IAEA monitored sites with relevant capabilities as part of their OMV activities.
  • Verified, accounted for, and recovered the entire inventory of research reactor fuel
  • Arranged for removal of all HEU fuel from Iraq