Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday exposed a secret facility in central Iran that he said was used for nuclear weapons research until the Iranians realized Israel knew of its existence.
At that point, according to Netanyahu, the site was hastily “wiped out” and the evidence of nuclear research was “destroyed.”
“Today, we’re revealing that yet another secret nuclear site was exposed in the archives that we brought from Tehran. In this site, Iran conducted experiments to develop nuclear weapons,” Netanyahu said in his statement on Monday. The archives he referred to were obtained in an Israeli intelligence raid on a warehouse in Tehran last year.
The site in question is located in Abadeh, south of the central Iranian city of Isfahan. Three other notable landmarks near the alleged research site are a large air-defense facility, the uranium enrichment plant at Natanz, and a facility that produces yellowcake uranium powder.
Netanyahu’s presentation included satellite photos of the facility taken in June and July that illustrated its hasty destruction.
“This is what I have to say to the tyrants of Tehran: Israel knows what you’re doing, Israel knows when you’re doing it, and Israel knows where you’re doing it,” Netanyahu said.
“I call on the international community to wake up, to realize that Iran is systematically lying. The only way to stop Iran’s march to the bomb, and its aggression in the region, is pressure, pressure and more pressure,” he urged.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif immediately ridiculed Netanyahu’s press conference on Twitter, without providing any explanation for the satellite photos displayed by the Israeli prime minister:
The possessor of REAL nukes cries wolf—on an ALLEGED “demolished" site in Iran
He & #B_Team just want a war, no matter innocent blood & another $7 TRILLION
Remember his “GUARANTEE” of "positive reverberations" in ’02?
This time, he assuredly won’t be on the sidelines watching. pic.twitter.com/LsR6PYkZZs
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) September 9, 2019
Netanyahu’s press conference was also criticized by the Israeli opposition, which accused him of politicizing sensitive intelligence for re-election purposes.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is currently investigating uranium traces discovered at a facility in Tehran Netanyahu described as a “secret atomic warehouse.” The Iranians have not yet provided an explanation for the radioactive traces despite the head of the IAEA requesting a prompt response on Monday.