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Mystery in Parchin: Accident at Iran’s secret military Site Kills one engineer

Satellite imagery of the site in Parchin/ Photo by Google Earth, GeoEye

According to the Iranian semi-official Fars news agency, an Iranian engineer was killed and another was injured following an explosion that occurred on Wednesday at the Parchin military complex.

 “Investigations into the cause of this accident are underway,” said a short statement. The site, which is located 60 kilometers (37 miles) southeast of Tehran has been linked to Iran’s missile manufacturing and nuclear development. It has been the location of a number of inexplicable explosions in the past, some of which have been attributed to Iran’s enemies.

The sensitive complex contains many industrial and research divisions. Western intelligence services suspect Iran conducted nuclear bomb explosion tests at Parchin more than a decade ago.

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The explosion in Parchin comes after a member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards was assassinated in Tehran on Sunday. The victim, Colonel Hassan Sayad Khodayari, was responsible for enlisting drug dealers and other criminal organizations to carry out kidnappings and other assaults against Israeli and Jewish targets abroad, according to reports in Israeli and Iranian media.

Wednesday, an unidentified intelligence officer told The New York Times that Israel had informed US authorities that it was responsible for the death in an order to warn Tehran against the ongoing operations of an alleged secret organization he allegedly helped manage.

Two IRGC-affiliated individuals told the Times that Khodaei played a crucial role in the delivery of drone and missile technologies to Iran-backed militants in Syria and Hezbollah forces in Lebanon. Additionally, he worked as a tactical advisor to the Syrian militias.

Israeli defense figures expressed surprise at the publication of the responsibility claim, as Israel and the US have a close intelligence relationship, under which a news item like this wouldn’t have reached the press, Israeli media reported. 



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