Iran has derided Benjamin Netanyahu's claims of a secret nuclear facility in Iran. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called the presentation by Israeli Prime Minister "an arts and crafts show." Sputnik discussed this with Oded Eran, a senior research fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies, Israel.
Sputnik: Do you think sufficient proof has been provided to support Netanyahu's claims?
Oded Eran: I think that for the claim that was documented by Netanyahu at the UN General Assembly was the appropriate occasion. You get the attention of the whole world, you get the attention of the international media and you get the attention of the international organizations which are involved, whether the UN itself or the International Atomic Energy Agency, which is the body that is supposed to monitor what countries which are members, including Iran, are doing in this respect.
So it's not a surprise that Netanyahu chose this occasion, as indeed, he did in previous occasions, where he informed the international community to the aggressions of Iran on the issue of nuclear activity.
Sputnik: You spoke about the International Atomic Energy Agency — it's strange to find that what Netanyahu has said would go against their findings for the past 12 reports which they have filed in keeping with the JCPOA, how do you explain that?
Oded Eran: The IAEA, as we all know, is the body which is supposed to monitor these activities and it was authorized by the JCPOA to continue to do this, it doesn't mean that the Iranians reveal everything that they're doing, it doesn't mean that the IAEA is not doing a good job, it means that somehow this intelligence which Netanyahu brought to the attention of the world was not found by the IAEA.
Israel delivered this intelligence to Mr. Amano, the director general of the IAEA, and he hopes that the IAEA will do what it needs to do. The onus of the proof is now on the Iranians, they have to either show that there's nothing and, as Netanyahu predicted, there will be Iranians running around this locality trying to erase all evidence and this will be probably monitored by every intelligence service which operates in Tehran, and so the question is not whether the IAEA failed; the question is, okay, this is the information, all the countries involved are in the JCPOA and others, what are you doing with the intelligence to prove that it's wrong, or unfortunately, if it's right, what do you do about it.
Sputnik: Do you have any indications that any of the signatories of the JCPOA are willing to take the word of Netanyahu over that of the International Atomic Energy Agency?
Oded Eran: Each of the signatories, each of them, I'm sure, is doing intelligence work all over the world including Tehran, so, as I said, the question is, okay Mr. Netanyahu, here you got us the information, we will do whatever we can do with our own means to verify whether you're right or whether it is the imagination of yours and we will act accordingly; the question is, and I'm sure that all of the six are going to take either diplomatic activity or anything else to follow this issue, I can't believe that the international community and especially those who signed the agreement or the deal, there's no agreement, the deal with Iran will remain silent and inactive on this important issue.
The views and opinions expressed by the expert do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.
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