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Vials of Dangerous Chemicals From Iraq Found at United Natio

DEVELOPING STORY: Vials of dangerous chemicals found by weapons inspectors in Iraq more than a decade ago were discovered Thursday in a United Nations office building near the world body's headquarters in the heart of New York City.

No evacuations were ordered, and there was no immediate danger to the public, a U.N. spokesman said.

Hazardous materials personnel and the FBI were reported at the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission offices at 48th Street and 1st Avenue in Manhattan. The commission's offices are on the building's third and sixth floors.

The material was phosgene, a chemical warfare agent, U.N. spokeswoman Marie Okabe told a hastily gathered news conference.

The inspections unit said in a statement that the chemicals had been found last Friday as weapons inspectors were closing their offices, said Ewen Buchanan, a spokesman for the inspectors.

Phosgene was used during World War I as a choking agent, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

The U.N. issued the following statement on the incident:

"On Friday 24th August 2007 in archiving UNSCOM files, UNMOVI staff discovered two small plastic packages with metal and glass containers (ranging in size from small vials to tubes the length of a pen) with unknown liquid substances. The archives are located at the UNMOVIC headquarters, 866 East 48th Street, 3rd and 6th floors.


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Just don't drop it
Former U.N. weapons inspectors told ABCNews.com that vials of phosgene had also been used by inspectors in Iraq to help calibrate air sampling instruments.he former inspectors said the remaining vials were supposed to have been destroyed.

"If it is properly sealed, it should not pose much of a threat unless it is dropped," said former New York City emergency services director Jerry Hauer, an ABC News


Moving it would sure not be a time for "Ooops"

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Remember Carbon Tetrachloride...

In reply to: Just don't drop it

Remember Carbon Tetrachloride fire extinguishers? A place at which I once worked had them in their trucks in case of a fire. The Ooops factor was that when heated to decomposition, like when sprayed onto a burning engine, it formed phosgene.

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Carbon tet was also

In reply to: Remember Carbon Tetrachloride...

common dry cleaning fluid. If you're old enough, you might remember the smell that came from out of the garment bags when you took them off. As well, you could buy bottles in the store to use as spot remover. There were lots of fun chemicals around years ago that you can't get anymore. I could buy KNO3 (potassium nitrate) by the pound in the drug store back in the 60....cost.... about 69 cents. If caught with it on your person today, you'd be wrestled to the ground, handcuffed, and might not see the light of day for quite some time. Happy

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Calibration use makes sense

In reply to: Just don't drop it

Must have been a slow news day. I also remember it being reported that the US deliberately develops more deadly strains of bacteria such as anthrax....not for the purpose of using them but for the purpose of finding ways to kill them. That makes good sense too.

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Re: Iraqi chemicals

In reply to: Vials of Dangerous Chemicals From Iraq Found at United Natio

There must be some mistake. Good old Hans said they didn't have any such chemicals...

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Hans was wrong?

In reply to: Re: Iraqi chemicals

And everyone else was right?

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(NT) The key phrase is "more than a decade old," Clay.

In reply to: Re: Iraqi chemicals

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NO! The key phrase is

In reply to: The key phrase is "more than a decade old," Clay.

"...dangerous chemicals found by weapons inspectors in Iraq..."
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(NT) "e"......... you know where to put it ;)

In reply to: Sshhh, don't spread erronous intelligence

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