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Italy denies report of Iraq A-weapons deal

Italian officials denied Tuesday a New York Times report that Italy has sold Iraq equipment that could be used to make weapons-grade plutonium. Italy's most recent nuclear deal with Iraq dated back to 1978, when Italy's National Nuclear Energy Commission (CNEN) and a private company, Snia Techint, supplied Iraq with two nuclear laboratories, officials said. But a CNEN spokesman said there was no way these laboratories could be used to produce, extract, or reprocess plutonium, and he knew of no further nuclear deals between Italy and Iraq.