Drones target Iranian military site in Isfahan
Iran acknowledged that the drone strike targeted one of its military installations in the central city of Isfahan over the weekend, but did not blame any foreign or opposition groups for orchestrating the attack.
Iran’s Defense Ministry said a drone carrying a small bomb crashed into the roof of one building at the facility late Saturday night, while two other drones were intercepted and destroyed. There were no casualties, he added, and there were no violations other than “minor damage.”
Mobile phone video shown on Iranian state television captured the moment of the explosion: a flash of light followed by a massive explosion. The Fars news agency, close to the Revolutionary Guards, released another video shortly after that showing fire engines near the scene.
Iran’s official news agency, IRNA, said the same site in Isfahan had “similar things happen” before, without specifying when. He added that the drones used over the weekend were advanced.
The strike comes at a time when international and domestic pressure on the Islamic Republic is mounting on several fronts.
Western governments have criticized Iran for supplying Russia with drones that are used in the war against Ukraine.
The same governments, like Israel, also expressed concern about Iran’s development of its nuclear program, promising not to allow Tehran to develop atomic weapons.
The Islamic Republic has also come under fire for cracking down on mostly female-led anti-regime protests in response to the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old who died while in police custody after being detained for not wearing the hijab properly.
It is widely believed that over the past decade Israel has orchestrated a series of operations inside Iran to sabotage the country’s nuclear program. These covert operations include the assassination of nuclear scientists and attacks on nuclear facilities, as well as the smuggling of documents.
However, Iranian media and officials did not blame Israel for Saturday’s drone attack.
Iranian Ground Forces Commander Kioumars Heydari did not comment on the incident, but said on Sunday that the country has made progress in developing various technologies in its defense industry.
“We shed the old skin in the area [production of] weapons,” he told his troops.
A US government spokesman did not comment on whether the attack was carried out by Israel, but added that “US military forces have not carried out strikes or operations inside Iran.”
Additional report by Colby Smith in Washington