Unknown Amad Sites, Prior to the Nuclear Archive Seizure

18 May 2021

Unknown Amad Sites, Prior to the Nuclear Archive Seizure

By David Albright and Sarah Burkhard

The Institute for Science and International Security

May 18, 2021

https://isis-online.org/isis-reports/detail/unknown-amad-sites-prior-to-the-nuclear-archive-seizure

 

 

Based on our newly released book, Iran’s Perilous Pursuit of Nuclear Weapons,1 many Amad facilities were unknown to Western intelligence and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) prior to the seizure of the Nuclear Archive in early 2018. This table lists 20 main facilities and sites, representing the bulk of the Amad Plan facilities. Of those, the existence of nine major Amad facilities was completely unknown until after the seizure of the Nuclear Archive, which provided great detail about their activities.2 Interestingly, two sites, Shahid Boroujerdi and Al Ghadir, both tunnel complexes, were visible in commercial satellite imagery, but it was not known until the archive that they were part of the Amad Plan and had a nuclear weapons purpose.3 Another three sites were partially known to exist, but their locations were not known. Seven sites were known by location and certain activities, but many additional activities were revealed by the archive. The final location is unknown, and any of its activities are not described in the archive.

About half of the Amad sites were unknown by Western intelligence and the IAEA until after the seizure of the Nuclear Archive. Except in one case, the archive provides much greater detail about the Amad sites that were already known prior to its seizure.


 

1. The book is available on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B094DTRJFL?ref_=pe_3052080_276849420 

2. Potential locations for stored nuclear weapons-related equipment or related documents are not included. 

3. The latter was revealed years later as a secret enrichment site and regarded as highly suspicious, but it was not known until the Archive seizure that it was started by Amad to produce weapons grade uranium; it must therefore be counted as one Amad site that was missed, together with Boroujerdi.