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Officials Deny, Netizens Crack Jokes About Netanyahu's 'Nuclear Warehouse'

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Prime addresses the General Assembly at the United Nations in New York September 27, 2018.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and his ministry's spokesman have denied Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's accusations about a "secret atomic warehouse" near Tehran in breach of the 2015 nuclear deal with the West.

Netanyahu had charged in his speech at the UN General Assembly in New York on Thursday, September 27 that Iran was keeping a "secret atomic warehouse" in the southern suburbs of Tehran, despite the 2015 deal with world powers that was meant to keep it from obtaining nuclear weapons, AP reported Thursday evening.

Israel's PM Netanyahu Claims Iran Has Secret Atomic Warehouse
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In an early Friday morning tweet, Zarif characterized Netanyahu's evidence as an "arts and craft show," adding that no such show could "ever obfuscate that Israel is only regime in our region with a 'secret' and 'undeclared' nuclear weapons program - including an 'actual atomic arsenal'. Time for Israel to fess up and open its illegal nuclear weapons program to international inspectors.

Zarif also denied Netanyahu's remarks in an interview with the official news agency IRNA, adding that "The Tel Aviv regime will never manage to achieve anything by playing such games,” the Iranian foreign minister added."

Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Ministry's Spokesman Bahram Ghassemi also denied Netanyahu's statement, adding, “The world will only laugh loudly at this type of false, meaningless and unnecessary speech.”

This was Netanyahu's third such presentation about Iran's nuclear program, two of them at the UN General Assembly meetings.

Pictures of his presentations may not look artistically perfect. However, experts will examine them for minute details as it was apparently the case about one of Netanyahu's presentations about Iran's nuclear facilities.

Reuters on Thursday quoted a U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, as saying that "the United States is aware of the facility Netanyahu announced and described it as a “warehouse” used to store “records and archives” from Iran’s nuclear program.

Major Nuclear Facilities In Iran
Major Nuclear Facilities In Iran

A second U.S. intelligence official called Netanyahu’s comments “somewhat misleading. First, we have known about this facility for some time, and it’s full of file cabinets and paper, not aluminium tubes for centrifuges, and second, so far as anyone knows, there is nothing in it that would allow Iran to break out of the JCPOA any faster than it otherwise could.”

Since Thursday evening, hundreds of Iranian social media users mocked Netanyahu's presentation, particularly because of the cultural connotation of the name of the place where Netanyahu said the secret warehouse was located.

Torquzabad, or Dorqouzabad, where Netanyahu showed on the map, is the Persian synonym for a place too far that possibly does not exist. However, social media users' research proved within minutes of Netanyahu's speech that such a place exists somewhere South of Tehran and has a population of 2800 people.

Iran -- A road sign which indicates the village of Turquzabad, in South-west of Tehran.
Iran -- A road sign which indicates the village of Turquzabad, in South-west of Tehran.

The place is known for its carpet washing companies and google map shows several of such places including the area where Netanyahu showed. Carpets can be seen even in satellite pictures of the area as this Twitter post shows.

Many, like these Twitter users thought such a place did not exist or was an imaginary place:

Tens of others believed that some Iranians have pulled a trick on Israeli agents:

Another Iranian suggested that there might be a heavy water reactor in Doulab, another place equally known like Dorqouzabad, with a name that has a bit of sexual connotation.

Yet another one, suggested that a gold medal should be awarded to the Iranian Intelligence Ministry's Counter-Intelligence unit: