A classified draft CIA assessment has found no firm evidence of a secret drive by Iran to develop nuclear weapons, as alleged by the White House, says a top US investigative reporter Seymour Hersh, writing in The New Yorker.
The administration’s planning of a military option was made ”far more complicated” in recent months by a highly classified draft assessment by the Central Intelligence Agency “challenging the White House’s assumptions about how close Iran might be to building a nuclear bomb.”
“The CIA found no conclusive evidence, as yet, of a secret Iranian nuclear-weapons program running parallel to the civilian operations that Iran has declared to the International Atomic Energy Agency,” Hersh wrote, adding the CIA had declined to comment on that story.
A current senior intelligence official confirmed the existence of the CIA analysis and said the White House had been hostile to it, he wrote.
Iran meanwhile insists it will use the enriched uranium only to fuel nuclear power stations, something it is permitted to do as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
[Source: Agence France-Presse]