Israeli public radio cited intelligence sources as saying that Israel’s Mossad spy agency carried out a cyber-attack on Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility.
Kan Radio’s report, which cited unnamed sources, said the attack on Natanz was “an Israeli cyber-attack in which the Mossad was involved… [and] the damage to the Iranian facility is greater than reported” by Tehran.
An “incident” at Natanz cut power across the facility causing a blackout, spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi earlier told state media.
Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, described the event as “nuclear terrorism” but did not elaborate on who Tehran held responsible.
Salehi’s comments to state TV did not explain what happened at the facility. However, Natanz has been targeted by sabotage in the past. The Stuxnet computer virus, discovered in 2010 and widely believed to be a joint U.S.-Israeli creation, once disrupted and destroyed Iranian centrifuges at Natanz amid an earlier period of Western fears about Tehran’s program.
Natanz suffered a mysterious explosion at its advanced centrifuge assembly plant in July that authorities later described as sabotage. Iran now is rebuilding that facility deep inside a nearby mountain.
Israel, Iran’s regional archenemy, has been suspected of carrying out that attack as well as launching other assaults, as world powers negotiate with Tehran in Vienna over its nuclear deal.