The raid was carried out in Germany and in Istanbul simultaneously. In Istanbul, an Iranian-born Turkish citizen was detained for questioning and forces seized many documents relating to the smuggling. Another Iranian suspect, reportedly a key figure in the operation, was apprehended at the Ataturk Airport.
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Turkish customs forces raided a house owned by an Iranian couple also reported to hold a key role in the smuggling, but the two could not be found and are still wanted by Turkish authorities. Meanwhile, German forces detained five Iranian suspects.
Late last month, Germany charged two people in the smuggling of engines to Iran for its drone industry. The two Iranian citizens were charged with violating German export laws by transferring 61 engines in the years 2008 and 2009. If convicted, they could face two to 15 years in prison.
A report issued by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) last month showed that Iran has 167 kg of enriched uranium and has installed 180 advanced centrifuges in a facility in Natanz.
Heavy water is needed to operate a nuclear reactor that can produce plutonium, which could then be used to make a bomb.
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