Iran accuses Israel of the attack on Natanzand promises revenge
The new Iranian centrifuges IR-9 are an incredible leap in quality compared to the old IR-1: it’s like going from a horse-drawn cart to Mercedes”. The Israeli press this morning explains very clearly what happened Sunday in Natanz, the Iranian nuclear plant hit by an attack that would have slowed the country’s nuclear program by at least nine months.
The new plants, the new centrifuges for uranium enrichment, a line inaugurated only the previous day, were damaged. And the action may have been internal sabotage rather than a cyber raid, which would make the offense against the Iranians even heavier. All while in Vienna the United States has started new indirect negotiations with Iran, in an attempt to restart the nuclear deal that the Trump administration had abandoned in 2018.
On Monday morning, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif accused Israel of Sunday’s attack: “This attack was an episode of nuclear terrorism. We reserve the right to respond, the Zionists want to take revenge for our progress on the road to lifting sanctions, they have publicly said they will not allow it. But we will take our revenge”.
The spokesman for the Foreign Ministry added that Iran considers the attack “a crime against humanity, of which we have already informed international institutions, above all the United Nations”. According to some Iranian news sites, the person responsible for the sabotage has been identified: “We have identified him, we have taken the necessary measures to block him”, Iranian intelligence sources told the “Nour-news” website.
Minister Zarif would be considered a “dove” within the Iranian political system, but the attack on the Natanz plant just as Iran is negotiating in Vienna to return to the freezing of the nuclear program is an act to which the entire Iranian leadership is forced to react. Among other things, many point out that in these hours the American Defense Minister Lloyd Austin is visiting Israel: tomorrow he also met the first minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who confirmed to him that his government will do everything to prevent him from returning. an agreement is in force that cancels the economic sanctions against Iran in exchange for the freezing of its nuclear plan.
There is currently no official confirmation that Israel would have led the attack, apart from the assessments of American intelligence experts quoted by the New York Times and some assumptions from the Israeli press. But yesterday, Israeli Chief of Staff Aviv Kochav openly said “our enemies in the region know what we are doing, they evaluate our capabilities and weigh their reactions”.