22.3 C
New York

Inside Iran’s underground secret missile cities linked by vast tunnels where regime is building chilling nuclear arsenal

Published:

IRAN claims to have secret missiles cities buried underground in all provinces as it works towards building terrifying new-generation weapons.

The Middle Eastern titan continues to bolster its chilling nuclear arsenal amid tensions with the West and, most notably, Israel.

Iran has a spate of dangerous nuclear sites, some of which are hidden underground

11

Iran has a spate of dangerous nuclear sites, some of which are hidden underground
A view of what is believed to be a uranium-enrichment facility near Qom, Iran, in a satellite photograph

11

A view of what is believed to be a uranium-enrichment facility near Qom, Iran, in a satellite photographCredit: Reuters
Dozens of missiles lined up in a secret underground bunker as fears grow over Iran's weapon capabilities

11

Dozens of missiles lined up in a secret underground bunker as fears grow over Iran’s weapon capabilitiesCredit: Reuters

Nuclear weapons experts have previously warned that Tehran could produce a bomb in as little as six months from one of its “covert” nuclear hubs, which are believed to be linked by vast tunnels.

Although all precise locations aren’t known, it’s thought Iran has hidden weapons facilities in at least seven different locations outside the capital – all buried at a depth of 1,640ft beneath the surface.

The bases contain road-mobile transporter erector launcher trucks, along with other hardware, have missiles of “varying ranges” ready to be launched from underground bases.

When a video was released from one of the underground sites in 2015, Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh said Iran’s missile bases could “erupt like a volcano from the depth of earth.”

In 2016, the second-in-command of the Revolutionary Guards boasted that Iran’s depots and underground facilities were so full that it didn’t know where to store new missiles.

Last month, Iran announced its creation of a new suicide drone to add to its rapidly increasing arsenal of homegrown attack drones.

Despite stern international sanctions and an arms embargo, Iran has aggressively expanded its production line of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

Exactly what else they might be producing beneath the surface remains to be seen, but Iran has teased what they are capable of in recent threats towards Israel.

Following April’s drone and missile blitz on their arch enemy, Iran vowed to unleash a weapon “never used before” against Israel if they decided to retaliate.

Iran had fired over 350 attack drones and missiles at Israel in a failed revenge attack on April 15 after its consulate in Damascus was bombed.

Claims Iran has developed new long-range Khaibar-buster missiles that can strike Israel and regional US bases

The five-hour barrage included 170 drones, 110 ballistic missiles and 30 cruise missiles – 99 per cent of which were shot down by both Israel and its allies, including RAF Typhoons.

Iranian security chief Abolfazl Amouei warned afterwards that Tehran is “prepared to use a weapon that we have never used” if Israel issued a response.

It is unclear what weapon Amouei was referring to, but he warned Israel to “act wisely” as it considers its next steps, sparking terror over Iran’s capabilities across the world.

Israel did eventually respond with a calculated precision strike on the Iranian city of Isfahan, with many believing the nuclear site there was a target.

Although there were no reports of any nuclear hubs being struck, a nearby air base did suffer hefty damage unveiled in leaked images – located just an hour away from Iran’s primary uranium enrichment facility.

The Natanz enrichment, shielded by armed IRGC troops, anti-aircraft defences and perimeter-wide fencing is thought to harbour considerable stores of the element.

Since 2019, Iran has increased its amount of enriched uranium from 997kg to 5,525kg.

In the past year alone it has seen a 38 per cent increase.

Satellite photographs have already exposed the hubbub of activity at the secretive fuel enrichment complex.

Built around a complicated tunnel network, the complex is nestled into the Kuh-e Kolang Gaz La mountain – which translates as “Pickaxe Mountain”.

Iran’s nuclear site in Isfahan, Iran, which was attacked by Israel last month

11

Iran’s nuclear site in Isfahan, Iran, which was attacked by Israel last monthCredit: AP
Vast tunnels which have been dug since 2019 at Kenesht Canyon, thought to lead deep underground

11

Vast tunnels which have been dug since 2019 at Kenesht Canyon, thought to lead deep undergroundCredit: Unknown
Tunnels have frequently popped up in satellite images of Iran

11

Tunnels have frequently popped up in satellite images of IranCredit: Unknown

Satellite images taken as recently as January show it is still under construction, as workers go about trying to make it invincible.

Some experts worry Iran could be building a nuclear bomb – or hiding its efforts to do so – possibly inside the secretive bunker.

Iran’s reluctance to allow inspections by nuclear watchdogs or to cooperate with the 2015 Iran nuclear deal makes it incredibly difficult for the West to gage exactly where they are at.

Shielded by the Zagros mountains, Natanz’s tunnel complex is even deeper than at Iran’s other primary underground plant – the Fordow enrichment hub.

Some reports suggest it used to cover 100,000 square metres, was buried eight metres underground and surrounded by 2.5 metre-thick concrete walls.

With more entrances and no obvious ventilation shafts, it would be much harder to destroy that some of Iran’s other facilities.

Extra security areas have been added since 2022, as well as construction material stockpiles.

ISIS say the images show “efforts by Iran to increase the hardness and survivability of the site”.

The underground rooms, they believe, are still being developed and pics from January show heavy machinery lining up around the site.

Iran’s Nuclear Sites

IRAN, a formidable and dangerous world power, is home to a number of nuclear sites.

It is thought to have active nuclear sites, research reactors and uranium mines.

Arak plant – satellite pictures of this plant near the Iranian town of Arak surfaced over 20 years ago.

It contains a heavy-water reactor with plutonium that can be used for nuclear bombs.

Bushehr nuclear power station – this power plant is a combination of Russian and German engineering.

It’s nuclear reactor is operating at 100% power and the site is home to enriched uranium, used for nuclear bombs.

Gachin uranium mine – home to uranium ore concentrate, or yellowcake, which can be transformed into enriched uranium ready for nuke bomb assembling.

Isfahan conversion plant – yellowcake is converted here into three dangerous substances.

Hexafluoride gase used in the enrichment process, uranium oxide used to fuel reactors and metal used in the cores of nuclear bombs.

Natanz uranium enrichment plant – this is Iran’s largest enrichment base.

It’s made up of three underground buildings and is closely watched by the international community.

Parchin military site – south of Tehran, this site is focused on research and the production of ammo, rockets and explosives.

Concerns have been raised that it is also used as part of Iran’s nuclear weapon development.

Qom uranium enrichment plant – a heavily fortified and initially secret facility where Iran carries out uranium enrichment.

Iran's surface-to-surface Khaibar-buster missiles displayed in an undisclosed location

11

Iran’s surface-to-surface Khaibar-buster missiles displayed in an undisclosed locationCredit: EPA
Iranian technicians work at one of the country's uranium sites

11

Iranian technicians work at one of the country’s uranium sitesCredit: Reuters
Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh previously said Iran's missile bases could 'erupt like a volcano from the depth of earth'

11

Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh previously said Iran’s missile bases could ‘erupt like a volcano from the depth of earth’Credit: Iranian state media
People gather around a component from one of Iran's intercepted ballistic missile that fell near the Dead Sea in Israel last month

11

People gather around a component from one of Iran’s intercepted ballistic missile that fell near the Dead Sea in Israel last monthCredit: AP
Fears continue to grow over what weapons Iran might have at its disposal

11

Fears continue to grow over what weapons Iran might have at its disposalCredit: AP

Related articles

Recent articles

spot_img