International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors found evidence of radioactive activity in the Tehran warehouse identified by Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his annual U.N. speech this past September, in which he claimed that Iran stored equipment and materials related to its military nuclear program. This is a major violation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed by the Obama administration.
In his speech at the UN, Netanyahu claimed that in August 2018 the Iranians cleared from the atomic storage facility 15 kg of enriched uranium they had kept hidden from the IAEA and had another 300 tons of nuclear-related equipment and material. At the time, the Iranians denied the allegations and claimed the building on the site was used for carpet cleaning.
According to Israel’s Channel 13, which broke the story:
Israel gave the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) information about the suspected warehouse, and UN inspectors visited the site several times, in March, taking samples of soil at the site to discover traces of radioactive materials and preparing a report on their findings.
According to senior Israeli officials, inspections by UN inspectors have been found to be positive, and in the last few weeks it has been confirmed, and senior officials have noted that there has been considerable evidence of radioactive contamination, indicating that nuclear materials not reported by Iran have been
The storage of nuclear materials and equipment at a secret site without reporting to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is a serious violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) signed by Iran. Such an official statement by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) may have far-reaching international political implications for Iran. The United States and Israel hope that in the next few days the International Atomic Energy Agency will publish a report that will include the damning findings and distribute it to all countries on the board of directors.
On Wednesday Netanyahu spoke with Donald Trump regarding the Iranian issue for the second time in a week, the IAEA discovery was probably the major topic.
Back in April, Reuters reported that the IAEA inspected the warehouse site more than once in a month — an indication that something was up:
Netanyahu argued the warehouse showed Tehran still sought to obtain nuclear weapons, despite its 2015 pact with world powers to curb its nuclear program in return for a loosening of sanctions.
At the time the IAEA bristled at being told what to do, saying it does not take information presented to it at face value and sends inspectors “only when needed”.
“They’ve visited the site,” one of the three diplomats said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the issue publicly and details of inspections are confidential.
One of the diplomats said the IAEA had been to the site more than once last month. The others said the agency had been there, without specifying when. The IAEA declined to comment.
“We have nothing to hide and any access given to the IAEA so far has been in the framework of laws and regulations and nothing beyond that,” an Iranian official said.
This latest incident is just more proof that President Trump did the right thing by pulling out of the JCPOA.
If it weren’t for Israel and the Mossad, its national intelligence agency, the world wouldn’t know about this dangerous development. And if it weren’t for Netanyahu taking the revelation public, the IAEA would probably have ignored the evidence.
This is a developing story. Updates will be added as new information becomes available.
Cross posted at The Lid