Tehran: The Iranian nuclear scientist assassinated near Tehran in November was killed by a one-tonne gun smuggled into Iran in pieces by the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, according to a report by The Jewish Chronicle.
Citing intelligence sources, the British weekly said a team of more than 20 agents, including Israeli and Iranian nationals, carried out the ambush on scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh after eight months of surveillance.
The report, which was published on Wednesday on the website of the London-based newspaper, could not be immediately confirmed.
A member of Iran’s armed forces was involved in the assassination, Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi said in an interview with state television on Monday.
Iranian media said Fakhrizadeh died in hospital on November 27 after armed attackers gunned him down in his car.
Shortly after his death, Iran pointed the finger at Israel, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif writing on Twitter of “serious indications of (an) Israeli role”.
Israel declined to comment at the time of the incident and on Wednesday night an Israeli government spokesman responded to the latest report by saying: “We never comment on such matters. There has been no change in our position.”
Fakhrizadeh, 59, had been described by Western and Israeli intelligence services for years as the leader of a covert atomic bomb programme halted in 2003, which Israel and the United States accuse Tehran of trying to restore.