Mohsen Fakhrizadhe: Iran confirms assassination of top nuclear scientist
- Iran’s top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadhe was killed in a shoot-out, state television reported.
- Iran will strike back against the killers, while no one has accepted the responsibility for the attack: adviser to Supreme Leader Khamenei said.
- Israel has declined to comment on the reports by the Iranian state television.
- Both Israel and the West rebuked Iran’s “Amad” nuclear program headed by Fakhrizadhe for being the nation’s attempt to gain nuclear power in the guise of the military operation.
- The kill comes amid growing concerns over Iran’s stockpiling low-enriched uranium, vital for nuclear weapon development, that is 12-time the agreed limit.
KOLKATA (India) — The Iranian ministry of defense has confirmed the death of its former top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadhe, state television reported, in a shoot-out at Tehran.
“The assassination of nuclear scientists is the most obvious violent confrontation of the imperialist system to prevent us from gaining access to modern science,” commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, Hossein Salami, tweeted on Friday.
“This cowardice – with serious indications of Israeli role – shows desperate warmongering of perpetrators,” Iran’s foreign ministry wrote on Twitter.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu once dubbed the man as “the father of the Iranian nuclear bomb” is being implicitly thought to be behind the attack.
Iran’s Foreign Affairs Minister Javad Zarif says “serious indications of Israeli role” in Mohsen Fakhrizadeh’s assassination, TRT World Now reported.
Iranian military commander and adviser to Supreme Leader Khamenei said Iran will strike back against the killers, while no one has accepted the responsibility for the attack.
Both Israel (citing some documents) and the West rebuked Iran’s “Amad” nuclear program headed by Fakhrizadhe for being the nation’s attempt to gain nuclear power in the guise of the military operation.
Iran maintained its military operation was largely peaceful.
Israel has declined to comment on the reports by the Iranian state television. Decades ago, Israel was reportedly accused of attempting several assassination plots to kill the scientist.
Fakhrizadhe headed Iran’s nuclear program for a long time before being disbanded in the 2000s. State TV has said it will present more information as it surfaces.
According to reports from the semi-official Fars news agency, believed to be close to the country’s Revolutionary Guard, the assassination took place East of Capital Tehran in the city of Absard, AFP news agency reported.
The attacker reportedly shot rounds of machine guns, targeting Fakhrizadhe who was believed to be in a car along with his bodyguards.
He was critically injured and was rushed to the hospital where he died from the injuries. Few of his bodyguards were also injured. Photos shared on social media show a Nissan sedan with bullet holes and blood polled on the street.
The assassination comes amid an increased enriched uranium production in Iran — a vital ingredient for both civil and military nuclear power generation.
Iran’s current low-enriched uranium stock of 2442.9 kg, as of November 2, is 12 times the agreed limit, signed between the United States, Germany, France, Britain, China, and Russia, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
A 2015 article in the New York Times compared Mohsen Fakhrizadhe with America’s J. Robert Oppenheimer, the physicist who helped America achieve the world’s first nuclear weapon during the First World War under the Manhattan Project.