VIENNA, 14 Nov. (IPS) With barely ten days before yet another of the endless meetings of the United Nations nuclear watchdog over the controversial Iranian atomic program, American intelligence sources have revealed the existence of “serious efforts” from the Iranians to build a nuclear weapon, according to “The New York Times”.
“American officials who did not want to be identified showed to a group of officials from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) a portable computer that contained more than 1.000 pages of valuable information demonstrating serious efforts by the Iranian to develop a nuclear war head to be fitted on the Shahab missile, capable of reaching Israel”, the paper said in an article published on 14 November.
The presentation did not reveal how the Americans got the computer, that was “stolen” last year, not did it said to whom it belonged.
Last month, Iran's hard line Muslim President Mahmoud Ahmadi Nezhad infuriated the international community when stated publicly that Israel must be "wiped off from the face of the earth".
The demonstration was made in mid July “somewhere in Vienna”, where is also based the IAEA. The presentation did not reveal how the Americans got the computer, that was “stolen” last year, not did it said to whom it belonged.
“Though the content of the computer does not prove that the Iranians have already developed a nuclear bomb, but it is a sound prove that they are lying when they claim that their atomic projects are for civilian use”, The New York Times stressed, adding that IAEA’s boss Mohammad ElBarade’i was among the Agency’s senior officials who attended the briefing.
The document contained in the computer shows designs of a series of explosive charges as well studies for provoking an explosion at an altitude of 600 metres, witch, according to the Americans, is the prime altitude from where a nuclear device can be exploded.
The data, which in recent months was shared with both the agency and key countries, is "not definitive [but] it is strongly suggestive that Iran has made significant advancement toward weaponisation", said one US official.
The contain of the laptop had been shared with some of America’s close allies.
The aim of the meeting and the demonstrations was to increase international pressures over Tehran and help the Board of the IAEA Directors to consider moving Iran’s case to the United Nations Security Council, a decision that so far the three major European nations, namely Britain, France and Germany that are engaged in difficult and complex negotiations with the ruling ayatollahs have opposed.
Nuclear experts Iran Press Service talked to about the computer affair did not took it seriously, observing that “making such things, i e a computer containing nuclear datas,, simulations and photographs is a child’s play” and asked why the Americans waited more than a year to reveal the “robbery”.
“It can be another of these little things that former US State Secretary Collin Powel exhibited during a stormy debate of the UN’s Security Council before American-British invasion of Iraq, explaining they were nuclear devices possessed by Saddam Hussein, the devices Mr. Powel admitted recently that they have become “stains” on his political carrier and also discredited badly the CIA, which had produced them”, the experts pointed out.
Reacting to the report, Iran’s Foreign Affairs Ministry’s senior spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said: "This is worthless and naive. We usually don't carry our secrets around in laptops".
"This is worthless and naive. We usually don't carry our secrets around in laptops".
Speaking to reporters on Sunday, he also confirmed that Iran would not accept a compromise on its disputed nuclear program that involved sensitive uranium enrichment activities being conducted outside the country.
"Enrichment should be carried out on Iranian soil, as other Iranian officials have said before", Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asfi told reporters, referring to what was said before by Mr. Qolamreza Aqazadeh, the Head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation after a meeting with Russia’s Head of Security Council, Igor Ivanov, who was visiting Iran and reported to have carried a proposal to allow Iran to carry out an initial step in making nuclear fuel in Russia.
Iran says it only wants to enrich uranium to low levels for atomic reactor fuel and argues such work is a right enshrined by the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), a work that Washington, Tel Aviv and some other countries suspects of being diverted to military purposes.
Talks between Tehran and the EU3 collapsed on August this year after the Iranians resumed works at the Uranium Conversion Facility near the central city of Esfahan.
Claiming that the resumption of the activities was against agreements reached between the two sides during a November meeting in Paris last year, the Europeans suspended the negotiations, as Tehran was insisting that A) works at the UCF was not part of the Paris Agreements and B) Iran has suspended its nuclear activities on a voluntary basis and C) enriching uranium and access to full nuclear cycle is its “natural and legal rights” under clauses of the Non Proliferation Treaty, of which Iran is a signatory.
Iran’s stubborn attitude has, however, brought much closer the positions of Washington with those of the EU3 resulting in the increase of possibility that, in case Tehran persisted on its present course, the IAEA would end to send the issue to the Security Council when it meets on 24 November. ENDS US IRAN NUCLEAR 141105