Satellite images show activities at the Iranian nuclear facility uncovered by Israel

A site revealed by Israel as an Iranian nuclear facility in 2018 has seen a spate of activity recently, Fox News reported late Tuesday based on satellite imagery.

The images Fox received from Maxar Technologies show that 18 vehicles were spotted in Sanjarian near Tehran in northern Iran in October 2020. In January further vehicles were recorded there as well as construction work including the preparation of a new access road.

The road was apparently covered in March, leaving images of “excavation eddies and new trenches,” Fox News reported, citing an analysis by Itay Bar Lev of the Intel Lab, who worked with the Institute for Science and International Security.

The institute is headed by David Albright, a former UN nuclear inspector who was the first to question the George W. Bush administration’s claims that Iraq produces weapons of mass destruction.

Sanjarian in the Iranian nuclear archive seized by Tehran of the Israeli secret service Mossad in 2018 and is suspected of being a production facility for “shock wave generators”, which are used to miniaturize nuclear weapons.

The US told Iran on Tuesday that it must keep the International Atomic Energy Agency – the United Nations Atomic Energy Inspectorate – monitoring its activities under an agreement that runs until June 24.

If Iran did not allow surveillance, the US would risk ongoing talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal, which former US President Donald Trump ended in 2018.

Talks in Vienna should resume at the end of this week.

“We urge Iran to avoid any action that would prevent the IAEA from collecting or accessing the information that the governors said for the speedy recovery of the …”

“Such measures would at least seriously complicate ongoing efforts to reach an agreement on how Iran can return to complying with its JCPOA commitments in exchange for a similar resumption of JCPOA,” it added, referring to the nuclear deal in full 2015, the joint comprehensive action plan.

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    Head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Agency Ali-Akbar Salehi and Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Rafael Grossi

Ali-Akbar Salehi, the head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Agency, received IAEA chief Rafael Grossii last year

(Photo: Reuters)

Speaking to the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee on Monday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said there was no clear indication that Iran had committed to resuming the nuclear deal.

“We have had indirect talks, as you know, over the past few months and it remains unclear whether Iran is ready and willing to do what it has to do to get the rules back on track,” he said.

Blinken also said that if Tehran continues to violate the terms of the original 2015 agreement, the breakout time for Iran to build a nuclear bomb could be shortened to a few weeks.

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