26 Oct 2009

Inspectors visit Iranian nuclear plant

3:34 pm on 26 October 2009

A team from the United Nations' nuclear watchdog has inspected a previously secret uranium enrichment plant in Iran, Iranian officials and media have said.

It is the first time monitors from the International Atomic Energy Agency had been allowed access to Iran's second enrichment facility, which is being built into a mountainside near the holy city of Qom, the BBC reports.

Earlier, Iran postponed its response to a proposed international deal under which it would ship out its stocks of enriched uranium to be made into fuel.

Iran says its nuclear programme is for purely peaceful purposes but the revelation of the existence of the new plant near Qom had increased fears in the West about Tehran's intentions.