Washington: New satellite photographs published by a US-based think tank appear to indicate attempts by Iran to clean up a military site south of Tehran suspected of being used for nuclear-weapons research.
The UN nuclear watchdog, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), has specifically been pressing Iran to allow inspectors to visit the military site, known as Parchin.
The agency believes the site may have been involved in the testing of high explosives used to simulate a nuclear detonation.
On Wednesday, the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) posted satellite photos taken on May 25 that appear to show the razing of two buildings at the Parchin site and the deployment of heavy machinery to move earth and equipment, The Wall Street Journal reports.
According to the paper, the activities are in the area where the IAEA believes there was a containment vessel used to conduct high explosives testing.
ISIS has also posted photos from April that apparently shows Iranian efforts to wash the Parchin site with water.
“The newest image raises concerns that Iran is attempting to raze the site prior to allowing the IAEA visit,” ISIS said in its report.
“The razing of the two buildings may also indicate that Iran has no intention to allow inspectors access soon,” it added.
Iran recently denied claims that it has sought to sanitise Parchin.
The IAEA, however, publicly raised its concerns about recent activities at the site.
First Published: Thursday, May 31, 2012, 14:52