Possible Iran nuclear program concession draws skepticism from Israeli officials

 (JNS.org) Israeli officials reacted with skepticism to a report by the German newspaper Der Spiegel that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is considering dismantling the deep underground nuclear site of Fordo.

The Arak heavy water reactor in Iran. Credit: Nanking2012/Wikimedia Commons.

Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin said Rouhani “is the father of the method of talking and enriching uranium at the same time,” Walla! News reported. Strategic Affairs, Intelligence and International Relations Minister Yuval Steinitz told Army Radio on Tuesday that Rouhani’s proposal is “a small step” and “bears no meaning.”

“Most of the centrifuges are not there; without Fordo they might be able to produce six, not seven, nuclear bombs,” Steinitz said.

Iran, according to Der Spiegel, would allow the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to inspect Fordo once the site’s centrifuges are dismantled. The Fordo facility, near the holy city of Qom, is buried deep inside a mountain to protect it against enemy strikes. In November 2012, the IAEA said Iran had established completed its work on the site with the construction of 2,784 centrifuges, 696 of which were enriching uranium.

Posted on September 17, 2013 .