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Iran's top nuclear scientist killed in apparent assassination, state media reports

Socialapps.Tech 11 November 27, 2020
Iran nuclear scientist assassinated outside of Tehran

Tehran, Iran (CNN)Iran's top nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh-Mahavadi, was killed on Friday near Tehran, state media has reported.

Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif implied that Israel is behind the death. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office has not responded to CNN's request for comment.

Fakhrizadeh was head of the research center of new technology in the elite Revolutionary Guards. He was considered one of the masterminds of Iran's controversial nuclear program.

A view of the scene where Mohsen Fakhrizadeh-Mahavadi, Iran's top  nuclear scientist,  was killed in Absard, Iran.

State media said the killing appeared to be an assassination.

Zarif called the death "cowardice -- with serious indications of Israeli role."

"Terrorists murdered an eminent Iranian scientist today," he said in a tweet. "This cowardice—with serious indications of Israeli role—shows desperate warmongering of perpetrators Iran calls on int'l community—and especially EU—to end their shameful double standards & condemn this act of state terror."

The Trump administration said it is closely monitoring the apparent assassination. The death "would be a big deal," a US official told CNN.

In April 2018, Netanyahu mentioned Fakhrizadeh by name when he unveiled a nuclear archive he said Mossad agents had taken from Tehran. He called him the head of a secret nuclear project called Project Amad. "Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh," Netanyahu told reporters.

Iran began to withdraw from its commitments to the 2015 landmark nuclear deal in 2019, a year after US President Donald Trump pulled out of the agreement and unleashed crippling sanctions on the country.

In the last month, the International Atomic Energy Agency documented several new breaches of the agreement. Earlier this week, Iran said it had begun injecting Uranium Hexafluoride gas into centrifuges at its Natanz facility.

This is a breaking news story. More details to follow.

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