Mossad, CIA, MI6 smuggled defecting Iranian nuclear scientist to UK: report
Mohammad Berno (Iranian Presidency/AFP/File)
The Mossad together with the CIA and MI6 smuggled a defecting nuclear scientist from Iran to the United Kingdom via a heavy-traffic migrant route used as a cover for the surreptitious mission, the Daily Mail reported on Sunday.
According to the British media report, the 47 year-old science technician reportedly helped to plan the assassination of the deputy director at Iran’s Natanz nuclear enrichment facility, Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan. The man who has been memorialized as a “nuclear martyr” in Iran reportedly died in a car explosion in Tehran in 2012.
The defector was also said to have been in possession of invaluable information on Iran’s nuclear program; intelligence that Israel is keen to get its hands on in its effort to prove Iran is acting in violation of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal.
Tehran, however, has always denied it sought a nuclear weapon, insisting its atomic program is for civilian purposes and compliant with the resolution.
The collaborative intelligence mission to smuggle the Iranian informant from Iran was reportedly hatched in October, and included a stop in Turkey en route to the UK where he was said to have traveled alongside an flux of Iranian migrants on an inflatable dinghy. He arrived to Kent in the south of England on New Years Eve.
"It was determined infiltrating him into a group of fellow migrants preparing to cross the Channel by boat offered one solution," a British secret service official told the Daily Mail.
Once in the UK, the defector was interrogated on the regime’s nuclear activity and swiftly extracted to the United States.
US President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the nuclear accord in May and re-imposed sanctions on Iran, citing the program among its reasons. However, as one as the key signatories to the deal, the UK’s role in the smuggling mission became complicated follow the US’s withdrawal.
“This wasn’t without challenges,” the British secret service source continued, explaining that his absence was quickly noted in Iran and that a “special unit of Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps had been dispatched.”
At least five Iranian nuclear scientists have been killed since 2010. Tehran has repeatedly accused Israel's Mossad, American CIA, and British MI6 of the assassinations. The US and UK have repeatedly denied involvement.
Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards claim to have foiled attempts by Israel to assassinate Iranian nuclear scientists and dozens of attempted hijackings by IS.
On Wednesday, in what was dubbed as the most recent violation of the nuclear resolution, Iran launched a second of its three satellites.
Tehran has defended its budding program, calling it a source of economic potential. However US intelligence has warned that the digital technology could be easily converted into long-range missiles.
Israel has also warned that Iran was using its space program as a guise for testing intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Next week, in a summit co-sponsored by the US and Poland spearheaded by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, dozens of countries will come together to focus on Middle East stability and peace.
At central pillar of the conference will focus on “making sure that Iran is not a destabilizing influence” Pompeo said, referring to the prevention of Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.
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