The Soviet Union has informed the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna that it may allow UN inspectors to visit some - but not all - of its civilian nuclear plants.
Monitor contributor Louis Wiznitzer reports the Soviets said they would negotiate with the UN to that effect in May. Western diplomats welcome this move and hope that this precedent could lead someday to Soviet willingness to allow on-site inspection of their military nuclear sites as well. The US, Britain, and France have already signed agreements with the IAEA allowing it to inspect their civilian nuclear installations.
Meanwhile, a Soviet officer in the UN Secretariat, Bladimir Yakimetz, has asked for political asylum in the United States.