DUBAI: The outgoing chief of Israel’s Mossad intelligence service has supplied the closest acknowledgment but his nation was behind latest assaults focusing on Iran’s nuclear programme and a army scientist.
The feedback by Yossi Cohen, talking to Israel’s Channel 12 investigative program “Uvda” in a phase aired Thursday evening, supplied a rare debriefing by the top of the usually secretive company in what seems to be the ultimate days of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu‘s rule.
It additionally gave a transparent warning to different scientists in Iran’s nuclear program that they too might change into targets for assassination whilst diplomats in Vienna attempt to negotiate phrases to attempt to salvage its atomic accord with world powers.
“If the scientist is keen to vary profession and won’t damage us anymore, than sure, generally we provide them” a method out, Cohen mentioned.
Among the many main assaults to focus on Iran, none have struck deeper than two explosions during the last 12 months at its Natanz nuclear facility. There, centrifuges enrich uranium from an underground corridor designed to guard them from airstrikes.
In July 2020, a mysterious explosion tore aside Natanz’s superior centrifuge meeting, which Iran later blamed on Israel. Then in April of this 12 months, one other blast tore aside one among its underground enrichment halls.
Requested about Natanz, the interviewer requested Cohen the place he’d take them if they may journey there, he mentioned “to the cellar” the place “the centrifuges used to spin.” “It would not appear like it used to look,” he added.
Cohen didn’t immediately declare the assaults, however his specificity supplied the closest acknowledgement but of an Israeli hand within the assaults. The interviewer, journalist Ilan Dayan, additionally seemingly supplied an in depth description of how Israel snuck the explosives into Natanz’s underground halls that went unchallenged by Cohen.
“The person who was chargeable for these explosions, it turns into clear, made certain to produce to the Iranians the marble basis on which the centrifuges are positioned,” Dayan mentioned. “As they set up this desk throughout the Natanz facility, they do not know that it already consists of an unlimited quantity of explosives.”
He additionally introduced up the November killing of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, an Iranian scientist who started Tehran’s army nuclear program a long time in the past. US intelligence companies and the International Atomic Energy Agency imagine Iran deserted that organized effort at searching for a nuclear weapon in 2003. Iran lengthy has maintained its program is peaceable.
Whereas Cohen on digital camera would not declare the killing, Dayan within the phase described Cohen as having “personally signed off on the whole marketing campaign.”
Cohen described an Israeli effort to dissuade Iranian scientists from collaborating in this system, which had seen some deserted their work after being warned, even oblique, by Israel. Requested by the interviewer if the scientists understood the implications of in the event that they did not, Cohen mentioned: “They see their associates.”
Iran has repeatedly complained about Israel’s assaults, with Iran’s ambassador to the IAEA Kazem Gharibabadi warning as just lately as Thursday that the incidents “not solely might be responded decisively, but additionally definitely go away no choice for Iran however to rethink its transparency measures and cooperation coverage.”
Iran’s mission to the United Nations didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark over the feedback by Cohen, who was changed by former operative David Barnea.

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