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But in an overnight deal that stunned the nation, he instead joined forces with Kadima, the largest party in parliament, with 28 seats.


Nuclear inspector killed in car crash

TEHRAN — A U.N. nuclear inspector from South Korea was killed Tuesday and a colleague was injured in a car crash near a reactor site in central Iran, news reports said.

There were no immediate indications of foul play. But the crash is likely to undergo intense scrutiny.

The official Islamic Republic News Agency said the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspector died when the car overturned around a heavy water reactor being built in Khondab, about 150 miles southwest of Tehran.

Iran says the reactor - part of the Arak complex - will be used to produce isotopes for peaceful medical and industrial uses.

But the U.S. and others fear that spent fuel from the reactors could be reprocessed into plutonium for a warhead. Iran denies it seeks nuclear weapons.

The Islamic Republic News Agency identified the fatally injured inspector as Seo Ok-Seok. The semiofficial news agency ISNA says another inspector from Slovakia was injured in the crash and taken to a hospital.

The Vienna-based IAEA had no immediate comment on the reports.

The incident comes ahead of a new round of technical discussions between Tehran and the IAEA to be held in Vienna beginning Sunday.

Higher-level negotiations also are planned later this month in Baghdad between envoys from Iran and six world powers including the United States.

From wire dispatches and staff reports