DUBAI: An on-line video and messages purportedly claiming responsibility for a hearth that analysts teach damaged a centrifuge assembly plant at Iran’s underground Natanz nuclear space deepened the mystery Friday spherical the incident.
The a pair of, assorted claims by a self-described neighborhood called the “Cheetahs of the Field of beginning” included language used by several exiled Iranian opposition organizations, as neatly as centered nearly totally on Iran’s nuclear program, seen by Israel as a menace to its very existence.
The disparate messages, as neatly as the truth Iran specialists had never heard of the neighborhood previous to, raised questions about whether Natanz again had confronted sabotage by a foreign nation as it had all over the Stuxnet laptop virus outbreak believed to gain been engineered by the US and Israel.
“If it’s proven that our country has been attacked by cyberattacks, we can retort,” warned Gen Gholam Reza Jalali, the head of Iran’s navy unit responsible of combating sabotage, in step with a document gradual Thursday by the Mizan recordsdata company.
Iranian officers gain sought to downplay the fire early Thursday, calling it greatest an “incident” that affected an “industrial shed.”
On the other hand, a released photo and video broadcast by Iranian allege television of the positioning confirmed a two-account brick constructing with scorch marks and its roof it appears to be like destroyed.
Particles on the ground and a door that regarded blown off its hinges suggested an explosion accompanied the blaze.
The fire started spherical 2 am native time within the northwest nook of the Natanz compound in Iran’s central Isfahan province, in step with recordsdata composed by a U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellite that tracks fires from dwelling.
Two US-basically based analysts who spoke to The Associated Press, relying on released images and satellite photos, identified the affected constructing as Natanz’s new Iran Centrifuge Meeting Center.
Iranian nuclear officers did now not retort to a take a look at for comment from the AP on the analysts’ findings.
Earlier than recordsdata of the fire changed into public, the BBC’s Persian carrier says its journalists got emails from the self-proclaimed “Cheetahs of the Field of beginning” claiming an assault at Natanz.
A video claimed the neighborhood included “troopers from the heart of regime’s security organizations” who desired to live Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. Iran lengthy has maintained its atomic program is for composed functions.
On the other hand, the World Atomic Vitality Agency has said Iran “implemented activities relevant to the arrive of a nuclear explosive instrument” in a “structured program” by contrivance of the tip of 2003.
The video and one written commentary furthermore referred to Supreme Chief Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as “zahhak,” a monster in Persian folklore.
However the tone across the messages clashed, with one the usage of terminology in total associated with Iran’s Mujahedeen-e-Khalq exile neighborhood and the video seemingly showing Iran’s Shiite theocracy as worse than the rule of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.
The video furthermore included segment of the nationalist music “Ey Iran,” which reformists and opposition groups every exclaim.
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The MEK and supporters of the shah’s exiled son Crown Prince Reza Pahlavi did now not retort to requests for comment.
The AP got no response to an email sent to one take care of associated with the “Cheetahs of the Field of beginning” statements.
The purported neighborhood’s name, “the Cheetahs of the Field of beginning,” furthermore struck some as irregular, provided that the “cheetahs” is a nickname of Iran’s nationwide soccer club. Ronen Bergman, an Israeli journalist who works with The Unique York Times and published a e book on the Mossad titled “Rise and Homicide First,” questioned why an Iranian opposition neighborhood would name itself that.
“It be highly no longer going that a serious opposition lunge would converse one of these name, which is maybe precisely what the those who came up with it, had been aiming of us to center of attention on,” Bergman wrote Friday on Twitter in English, with out elaborating.
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