Iran says it repelled a drone attack on a military

Iran says it repelled a drone attack on a military compound

Iran claimed in the night from Saturday to Sunday to have fended off a drone attack on a military site in Isfahan (centre), according to the Defense Ministry quoted by the Irna agency.

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“A failed attack was carried out with drones on one of the Defense Ministry’s equipment complexes,” he said, adding that there were no casualties but only “minor damage to the roof” of a building, according to the agency.

The announcement of this attack comes in a tense context amid a protest movement in Iran following the death of Mahsa Amini in September, ongoing differences over the nuclear issue and allegations by some countries of using drones to supply Tehran to the Russian army following the war in Ukraine.

The ministry said one of the drones was destroyed by the site’s air defense system, while the other two exploded.

“The attack, which took place around 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, did not cause any disruption to the operations of the complex,” the ministry said.

A video widely circulated on social media, the authenticity of which AFP has been unable to verify, shows a loud explosion at the scene and images of emergency vehicles then moving towards the area.

The Deputy Governor of Isfahan Province, Mohammad Reza Jan-Nesari, also stated on TV that the attack caused “no casualties”, adding that an investigation was launched to determine the causes.

Nuclear Sites

The authorities did not provide any information on the activities of the attacked site in the north of the large city of Isfahan.

Iran has several known nuclear research sites in this region, including a uranium conversion facility.

In April 2022, Tehran announced that it had started production of 60% enriched uranium at the Natanz site, approaching the 90% needed to make a nuclear bomb.

Negotiations to revive the 2015 nuclear deal, known by the acronym JCPOA, between Iran, the European Union and six major powers stalled after the United States pulled out in 2018. This deal was aimed at preventing Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons, a goal that Iran has always denied pursuing.

The nuclear program has been the target of multiple campaigns of cyberattacks, sabotage and targeted killings of scientists.

Iran has therefore accused Israel of conducting several covert actions on its soil, including an attack that Tehran says was perpetrated with a satellite-guided machine gun and killed a leading nuclear physicist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, in November 2020.