Iran tells UN Natanz attack is a ‘war crime’, points to Israel’s ‘sabotage record’

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Iran highlighted Israel’s “long sabotage record” in a letter to the United Nations Secretary General (UNSG) asking the international community to hold the culprit behind the attack on Tehran’s Natanz nuclear facility responsible but shied away from confirming Tel Aviv was behind it.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the attack constituted “reckless criminal nuclear terrorism” and a “grave war crime that must not go unpunished.”

An “incident” at Natanz cut power across the facility causing a blackout, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) said on Sunday.

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A former chief of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard (IRGC) said the attack had set off a fire at the site and called for improvements in security. In a tweet, Gen. Mohsen Rezaei said that the second assault at Natanz in a year signaled “the seriousness of the infiltration phenomenon.”

While Israel has not claimed responsibility for the attack, Israeli media cited intelligence sources as saying that Israel’s Mossad spy agency carried out a cyber-attack on Natanz.

Tensions between Iran and Israel have have already been high in recent weeks, with the arch-enemies exchanging attacks on commercial sea vessels.

The hostilities come as the US and Iran hold indirect talks to revive the abandoned 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which Israel strongly opposes.

Zarif wrote in his letter: “While several officials of Israeli regime have since autumn of 2020 publicly and openly threatened to carry out such operations to prevent the restoration of the JCPOA [nuclear deal], and many Israeli and western media outlets tacitly confirmed (and even boasted about) the complicity of Israeli war criminals in this latest terrorist act, Iran is refraining from any final judgement as to the culprit while a thorough investigation over the sabotage and its perpetrators is underway.”

Zarif went on to detail what he described as a “long record” Israel’s “sabotage operations” against Iran’s “peaceful nuclear activities.”

Natanz had suffered a mysterious explosion at its advanced centrifuge assembly plant in July that authorities later described as sabotage. Iran now is rebuilding that facility deep inside a nearby mountain.

Israel has been suspected of carrying out that attack as well as launching other assaults.

- With Agencies

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