German security officials have accused the Iranian regime of pursuing its goal to build missiles armed with nuclear warheads, the Berlin daily Der Tagesspiegel reported.
“Despite the nuclear agreement [reached with world powers in July 2015], Iran has not given up its illegal activities in Germany. The mullah regime also made efforts this year to obtain material from [German] firms for its nuclear program and the construction of missiles, said security sources,” Der Tagesspiegel wrote on Friday.
The paper added, “Iran has [according to the security sources] clearly not given up its long-term goal to become an nuclear power that can mount nuclear weapons on rockets.”
The article by the paper’s security correspondent Frank Jansen cited Iran’s proliferation activities in North Rhine-Westphalia and the drop in acquisition attempts from 141 in 2015 to 32 in 2016. The majority of Iran’s procurement activities in the state were for its ballistic missile program.
Jansen, who is a one of Germany’s most prominent journalists covering counterterrorism, radical Islamism and neo-Nazism, wrote in his Tagesspiegel article: “Security experts say Iran is very interested in equipment to extend the range of missiles. Disagreements within the mullah regime, explained security sources, [resulted] in the decline in attempts to acquire nuclear technology. State President Hassan Rouhani wants to slow down [the nuclear program], however, the Pasdaran, the paramilitary Revolutionary Guards, want to continue the nuclear program at all costs.”
The Jerusalem Post reported in October and July that Iran made more than 30 attempts to obtain equipment for its nuclear and missile programs in 2016. The Post examined 17 German intelligence reports as parts of investigative series into Iranian nuclear, missile, chemical and biological weapons activity in the Federal Republic.
According to the city state of Hamburg’s intelligence agency: “There is no evidence of a complete about-face in Iran’s atomic polices in 2016” [after it signed the nuclear accord the previous year]. Iran sought missile delivery technology necessary for its rocket program.”
Benjamin Weinthal is a research fellow at the nonpartisan Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Follow him on Twitter @BenWeinthal.
Follow the Foundation for Defense of Democracies on Twitter @FDD.