Prime Minister Naftali Bennett confirmed a recent Wall Street Journal report that Iran had stolen classified documents from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and used them to create cover stories to hide its nuclear weapons program on Tuesday.
“Iran stole classified documents from the UN’s Atomic Agency @IAEAorg and used that information to systematically evade nuclear probes. How do we know? Because we got our hands on Iran’s deception plan,” tweeted Bennett, attaching a link to a Google Drive including the relevant files.
Iran stole classified documents from the UN’s Atomic Agency @IAEAorg and used that information to systematically evade nuclear probes.
How do we know?
Because we got our hands on Iran’s deception plan.
— Naftali Bennett בנט (@naftalibennett) May 31, 2022
Bennett’s tweet included a satirical animated video portraying Iranian intelligence obtaining the documents and hiding evidence from the IAEA. “Iran lied to the world. Iran is again lying to the world. And the world must make sure that Iran doesn’t get away with it,” read a message at the end of the video.
The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Iranian nuclear documents seized by the Mossad in 2018 included secret records from the IAEA that Iran had accessed and used to create cover stories to hide parts of its nuclear program.
Middle East intelligence officials told the WSJ that the IAEA documents, marked confidential, and accompanying Iranian records were circulated between 2004 to 2006 among senior Iranian military, government and nuclear officials, as the IAEA was investigating the country’s nuclear program.
Among the documents were handwritten notes in Persian and attachments with Iranian commentary on the IAEA documents. Documents reviewed by the WSJ stated that Iranian officials credited unspecified “intelligence methods” for obtaining the confidential records.
One of the documents shared by Bennett on Tuesday detailed how the date of the liquidation of the civilian company Kimia Maadan that was working on a uranium mine was changed in order to allow Iran to tell the IAEA that the work on the uranium mine was done by the civilian company for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, which supported Iran’s claim that the mine was civilian and unrelated to any military nuclear work.
The document included a summary of a comment written by Ali Hosseini-Tash, a member of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, to Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the father of Iran’s nuclear weapons program who was assassinated in 2021. The comment read: “This is one of the major topics about which they [the agency] will ask us sooner or later, so we need to have a comprehensive scenario for it…Please note that we must hurry.”
The documents released by Bennett also included photos of an explosion chamber at Parchin. The photos were published in the past by the Institute for Science and International Security. According to the institute, explosives chambers at the site were used to conduct testing related to developing nuclear weapons.
Last week, an engineer was killed in an “accident” at a facility at the Parchin site, according to the Iranian Defense Ministry. The New York Times later reported that the incident was actually an attacked carried out by suicide drones against the site.
Iran continues to fail to explain detected uranium particles – IAEA
Earlier this year, Iran and the IAEA announced a deal in which Iranian officials would provide more comprehensive responses to the agency’s questions about evidence the Mossad presented from its seizure of Iranian documents in 2018.
In a report seen by Reuters on Monday, the IAEA stated that Iran has done little to answer the agency’s long-standing questions on the origin of uranium particles found at three undeclared sites despite a fresh push for a breakthrough.
Iran’s acting envoy to Vienna-based organizations Mohammad Reza Ghaebi rejected the IAEA report, saying Iran has repeatedly urged the agency to avoid releasing detailed information about its nuclear activities.
Ghaebi added that the IAEA report does “not reflect Iran’s broad cooperation with the agency,” according to the Iranian news agency IRNA. “Unfortunately the IAEA reports have put Iran’s documented and technical arguments aside and have called them invalid,” added the envoy, calling the report “unilateral.”
The lack of progress could set up a new diplomatic clash with the West when the International Atomic Energy Agency’s 35-nation Board of Governors meets next week. If western powers seek a resolution criticizing Tehran it could deal a further blow to stalled efforts to revive the 2015 nuclear deal.
A separate quarterly IAEA report seen by Reuters said Iran’s stockpile of uranium enriched to 60% – close to the roughly 90% that is weapons-grade, in the form that can be fed into uranium-enriching centrifuges – is estimated to have grown by 9.9 kg. to 43.1 kg.
That amounts to more than what the IAEA calls a “significant quantity”, defined as “the approximate amount of nuclear material for which the possibility of manufacturing a nuclear explosive device cannot be excluded” – or theoretically enough material, if enriched further, to make a nuclear bomb.
At 60% purity, a significant quantity would be around 42 kg of uranium.
Source » jpost