Israel reinforcing nuclear sites due to threats from Iran, nuclear chief says


(JTA) — Israel is upgrading and reinforcing its nuclear sites in light of “repeated and explicit threats” made by Iran and its proxies to attack them, a nuclear official said.

Zeev Snir, the director-general of Israel’s Atomic Energy Commission, addressed the issue in a speech Tuesday to a meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency, or IAEA. The address was provided to the Israeli media.

“These outrageous threats require Israel to take action and continue to protect and defend its nuclear facilities,” Snir said. “These facilities are constantly upgraded and reinforced, in line with IAEA safety guidelines, in order to withstand any attack.”

Israel rarely discusses its nuclear activities publicly.

Snir called for regional cooperation on nuclear security and safety, but noted that while Israel has “repeatedly expressed its willingness to collaborate with all of its neighbors” on nuclear safely and security, the Jewish state is not recognized by several Middle East countries and Iran has openly called for Israel’s destruction.

He called on the IAEA to “conduct a robust verification of Iran’s clandestine nuclear activities,” adding that the covert Iranian nuclear weapons program is “a documented fact.”

“Israel has repeatedly underlined the importance of confronting Iran with its lies and concealment efforts,” he said.

Snir said the new information recently revealed by Israel “conclusively proves that Iranian activities were part of a well-orchestrated plan to continue the development of nuclear weapons.”

He also spoke of Syria’s “undeclared, secretive military nuclear reactor at Dair Alzour,” which Israel bombed more than a decade ago.

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