The unexplained “accident” at a sensitive Iranian military site east of Tehran on Thursday was actually a drone strike, The New York Times reported on Friday.
The report, based on interviews with three Iranians with knowledge of the attack and one US official, said that the attack was carried out by quadcopter suicide drones.
The site of the attack, which killed an Iranian engineer and another employee, was the Parchin research center, which is home to a military base where Iran has been suspected of carrying out nuclear detonation tests, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
No one claimed responsibility for the attack but according to the report, the strike is similar to past strikes against Iran attributed to Israel.
A statement by Iran’s Ministry of Defense on Thursday called the engineer who died in the “incident” (rather than “accident”) a “martyr” – a term indicating that he was killed by an enemy strike.
Previous unexplained explosions occurred at the Parchin military site in 2020 and in 2014.
Satellite footage of Parchin from 2012 showed clean-up activity indicative of prior nuclear activities. Iran had initially refused to permit IAEA inspectors to visit Parchin but eventually relented in 2015.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)