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Source: Reuters

Sep 22, 2023

Iran says fire at defence ministry warehouse extinguished, under investigation

Sept 22 (Reuters) - An overnight fire at the Iranian defence ministry's battery warehouse was extinguished on Friday, state media reported, the latest in a series of incidents hitting the Islamic Republic's defence industry.

Officials said there were no reports of casualties and gave no details of damage to the storage site in the capital Tehran.

“One of the plastic warehouses related to battery manufacturing affiliated to the defence ministry" caught fire, said a defence ministry statement, adding that the cause of the blaze was under investigation.

Tehran's fire brigade said the fire broke out around midnight in a 2,000-square-metre storage area, and state TV aired footage of smoke rising from the scene.

Last month, Iran accused Israel of being behind a failed plot to sabotage its defence industry and the manufacture of missiles. It said a network of agents sought to introduce defective parts into the production of advanced missiles.

Israel did not respond to the allegations.

In February, Iran blamed Israel for a drone attack on a military factory near the central city of Isfahan.

Israel has long said it is willing to strike Iranian targets if diplomacy fails to curb Tehran's nuclear or missile programmes, but does not comment on specific incidents.

The two foes have been locked in a shadow war for decades, with mutual allegations of sabotage and assassination plots.

Editing by Mark Heinrich

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