A confidential report by the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), claimed that Iran had had enough information to produce a nuclear bomb, the New York Times reported on Sunday. However, Tehran has been claiming its nuclear plan is aimed at generating nuclear energy for civilian purposes.
Iran has "sufficient information to be able to design and produce a workable" nuclear weapon, the American daily quoted the report as saying. The report noted in its introduction that the conclusions are tentative and are subject to further confirmation.
The report, titled "Possible Military Dimensions of Iran's Nuclear Program," said Iran's Ministry of Defense runs a complex program "aimed at the development of a nuclear payload to be delivered using the Shihab 3 missile system."
"The atomic agency's report also presents evidence that beyond improving upon bomb-making information gathered from rogue nuclear experts around the world, Iran has done extensive research and testing on how to fashion the components of a weapon," the NYT said.
According to the report, the program apparently began in early 2002.