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Report: US smuggled 2 scientists out of Iran before assassination of nuclear programme mastermind

Iranian intelligence minister Mahmoud Alavi in Tehran on February 23, 2016 [BEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP via Getty Images]
Iranian intelligence minister Mahmoud Alavi in Tehran on February 23, 2016 [BEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP via Getty Images]

The US smuggled two Iranian Defence Ministry scientists out of the country only two weeks before the assassination of nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Ensaf News quoted a former security official as stating.

Ensaf News's report has reportedly prompted the Iranian authorities to threaten the news website, which is known for its ties to reformist forces, and pressure it to remove the report from the website.

The former official added that Fakhrizadeh's name was leaked to the assassins following reports about the theft of the nuclear programme official documents by the Israeli occupation.

Fakhrizadeh was the mastermind behind Iran's nuclear programme and head of the Defence Ministry's Organisation of Defence Innovation and Research. He was assassinated on 27 November of last year in the Damavand district near the capital, Tehran.

READ: Iran officials should fear the threats posed by Israel's Mossad, ex-intelligence minister says

Iranian Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi indicated that one of the accomplices in the assassination was a former armed forces member who had fled Iran before the operation was carried out.

This is not the first time that Iranian scientists working on Iran's nuclear programme have been assassinated. Between 2009 and 2011, four Iranian nuclear scientists linked to the programme were also assassinated in Tehran.

The killing of Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh and how Israel and Saudi Arabia might be behind it? - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

The killing of Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh and how Israel and Saudi Arabia might be behind it? – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

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