The Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) recently published new satellite imagery in which it appears that the massive clean up activity performed at an Iranian military complex suspected of nuclear activity, has been completed.
Over the past few months, the institute has released several images showing what appears to be the final result of considerable sanitization and earth displacement activity on the Parchin military base.
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The Parchin site garnered international attention in late February 2012 when the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) declared its interest in inspecting it in compliance with its mandate to ensure that there had been no military nuclear related activity. Meanwhile, Iran has consistently refused to grant the IAEA access to Parchin.
According to the ISIS institute, the site in question had remained unchanged since early 2004 until a month following the IAEA request for access; then what appeared to be clean-up activity began. Iran denied doing any cleanup, calling it routine construction work.
The latest image, which was released in late July, showed stark differences in the site’s current layout from earlier imagery. The entire area surrounding the buildings appears to have been bulldozed, covered, and flattened.
The only remaining traces of activity, according to the ISIS, are the apparent base of one of the demolished buildings and earth piles formed as a result of earth removal and displacement. There are no traces of heavy machinery or construction materials suggesting that no major activity is planned in the near future.
The institute stated that the degree of the site’s modification and the fact that this apparent cleanup work started soon after the IAEA’s request for access, cast further doubt on Iran’s claims that its nuclear program does not or has never had any military aspects.
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