There are now more than 100 inspectors working in Iraq, and since their arrival on 27 November they have seemed to be concentrating on a number of key facilities, making repeated visits for example to the Al-Tuwaitha plant once associated with Saddam Hussein’s nuclear programme. Head of the inspections team Hans Blix opened another channel of information on 12 December, writing to Baghdad demanding a list of key scientific personnel, but he has registered unease with the US plan to force scientists out of Iraq for questioning. In a statement on 14 December, the UN’s weapons inspection commission said that the request for this list should not be interpreted as a move towards the US-favoured approach and that the idea required further study. UN personnel have raised practical problems with taking scientists abroad, even voluntarily: Blix has said that he will not ‘abduct anybody’ or act as a ‘defection agency’. Others at the UN have questioned what would become of the Iraqis after they had been interviewed. Washington views the provision in Resolution 1441 for interviews within or outside Iraq as the best chance of getting to the bottom of Saddam Hussein’s weapons programmes, and has repeatedly expressed scepticism about the ability of inspections to achieve this aim.