Top Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was laid to rest Monday as news outlets and Iranian officials put a new spin on Friday’s attack.
Without presenting any evidence or sources, Fars news agency said the attack was helped by “a remote-controlled automatic machine gun” mounted on a pickup truck.
Israel and an opposition group were involved, according to various agencies and individuals, and the assassination was carried out by a team of Israelis who used remote “electronic devices.”
Authorities initially said a truck exploded and then gunmen opened fire on the scientist in Friday’s attack, killing him and a bodyguard. State TV interviewed a man who described seeing gunmen open fire.
Iran’s English-language broadcaster Press TV reported Monday that the weapon used in the assassination Friday was made in Israel, according to Reuters.
“The weapons collected from the site of the terrorist act (where Fakhrizadeh was assassinated) bear the logo and specifications of the Israeli military industry,” an unnamed source said.
None of the outlets immediately offered evidence supporting their claims, which also give authorities a way to explain why no one was reportedly arrested at the scene.
Iran’s Ali Shamkhani of the Supreme National Security Council said the “operation was very complex, using electronic equipment and no one was present at the scene.” The People’s Mujahedeen of Iran (MEK) were “certainly” involved, along with “the Zionist regime and the Mossad,” he said in video interviews.
Shamkhani, speaking at the funeral, vowed to continue the scientist’s work “with more speed and more power.” Israel has repeatedly declined to comment on the attack.
Fakhrizadeh headed Iran’s so-called AMAD program, which Israel and the West have alleged was a military operation possibly developing a nuclear weapon. Tehran has long insisted that its nuclear program is peaceful.