A large fire broke out Saturday night at a steel factory in the southeast city of Zarand in Iran. It's the latest in a mysterious string of blasts and 'accidental' blazes at sensitive sites to beset the Islamic Republic, raising questions of possible Israel sabotage akin to what happened a year ago in the summer of 2020.
"The governor of Zarand told the Iranian Fars News Agency that no injuries were caused in the incident and that the incident was under control," The Jerusalem Post reports. "The incident was reportedly caused by the sudden overflow of molten material in the blast furnace, with the governor stressing that no explosion occurred." But some early videos show otherwise.
Social media videos showed a sizable blaze which appear to have triggered a significant explosion, however, resulting in debris and what looks like molten steel flying into the air.
Even if Iran suspects that Israel is behind some of these latest incidents over the past month, Tehran officials are likely reluctant to go public with accusations given negotiators are reportedly on the cusp of a nuclear deal in Vienna, and as the country is gearing up to vote for a new president this month.
Israel has vowed to thwart a deal by any means possible, with embattled PM Netanyahu lately openly verbalizing he's willing to consider any level of actioneven if it causes "friction" with the United States.
And there are further reports of other fires afflicting oil facilities throughout the country, as US-funded VOA Newsdetails: "Several oil facility fires have occurred in Iran's southwestern Ahvaz region during the past 48 hours, Arab media reported Saturday. The reports came on the heels of a massive oil refinery fire this week in the capital, Tehran."
One Middle East news source reviews the recent string of fires and explosions hitting key Iranian assets as follows:
Three days earlier, a major fire tore through the Tehran Oil Refining Company in the outskirts of the Iranian capital.