Amid conflicting reports about the number of deaths caused by a massive 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck Iran on Tuesday, a map of the country’s nuclear-related facilities shows that the sensitive structures are not located near the epicenter of the quake in southeastern Iran, near the border of Pakistan. But given the magnitude of the quake, which swayed tall buildings as far away as New Delhi, it’s not yet clear if the regime’s nuclear facilities escaped the damage.
The map, provided to Foreign Policy by the Institute for Science and International Security, shows that the nearest facility to the quake’s epicenter in Sistan-Baluchistan is a uranium mine in Gchine. According to a 2004 IAEA report, the mine is capable of producing 21 tons of uranium per year and contains "low but variable grade uranium ore." The next-closest facility appears to be the Saghan uranium mine, which hasn’t seen substantial mining activity in many years according to the latest reports.
At least five people died in Pakistan near the Iranian border, according to local officials speaking with the BBC. Update: AFP reports the death toll is up to 34 in Pakistan. Although Iranian state TV reported at least 40 people killed, Iranian state media now say no deaths have been confirmed. Meanwhile, the Iranian Red Crescent has dispatched 20 search-and-rescue teams and workers in Abu Dhabi have evacuated office buildings. The quake comes days after a 6.3-magnitude earthquake hit southwest Iran and killed at least 37 people. Our own Ali Vaez has more analysis on that quake and its implications for Iran’s nuclear program here. You can see a fully interactive version of the ISIS map here.
Uri Friedman is deputy managing editor at Foreign Policy. Before joining FP, he reported for the Christian Science Monitor, worked on corporate strategy for Atlantic Media, helped launch the Atlantic Wire, and covered international affairs for the site. A proud native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he studied European history at the University of Pennsylvania and has lived in Barcelona, Spain and Geneva, Switzerland.| The List |