U.S. Report Says Iran Seeks to Acquire Nuclear Weapons; Cites Its History of 'Concealment' and 'Deception'

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), September 16, 2005 | Go to article overview

U.S. Report Says Iran Seeks to Acquire Nuclear Weapons; Cites Its History of 'Concealment' and 'Deception'


Byline: Bill Gertz, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Iran is concealing many of its nuclear facilities from international controls and the activities show it is seeking nuclear weapons, according to a U.S. government report.

The computer slide presentation developed by the Energy Department for the International Atomic Energy Agency also shows that Iran's nuclear program closely resembles Pakistan's nuclear arms programs.

"Iran's past history of concealment and deception and nuclear fuel cycle infrastructure are most consistent with an intent to acquire nuclear weapons," the report said.

The report, first made public Wednesday by ABC News, states that Iran has a "confirmed record of hiding sensitive nuclear fuel cycle activities from the IAEA."

The presentation contains numerous photographs, including satellite imagery, showing that Iran built "dummy buildings" to hide an underground vehicle entrance and ventilator shafts at its Natanz facility.

Iran has violated IAEA safeguards and provided false information about centrifuge development, plutonium experiments and military involvement in nuclear activity, the 43-page report stated.

The presentation was shown recently at the U.S. mission to the IAEA in Vienna at a briefing for IAEA representatives. It was produced by the Energy Department's Los Alamos National Laboratory and Pacific Northwest National Laboratories.

Seven of Iran's 13 nuclear-related facilities were kept secret until 2002, including enrichment plants at Lashkar-Abad, Tehran, Natanz, and uranium processing at Adrekan and Gachin, the report said.

"Iran's nuclear program is well-scaled for a weapons capability, as a comparison to [Pakistan's] nuclear weapons infrastructure shows," the report said. "When one also considers Iran's concealment and deception activities, it's difficult to escape the conclusion that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons.

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U.S. Report Says Iran Seeks to Acquire Nuclear Weapons; Cites Its History of 'Concealment' and 'Deception'
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