An Israeli military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities will result in "the collapse" of the Jewish state, Iranian state-run Press TV quoted Iranian Defense Minister Brig.-Gen. Ahmad Vahidi as saying on Saturday.
“The Zionist regime is on the verge of dissolution… a military attack by the Zionist regime will undoubtedly lead to the collapse of this regime,” the Press TV website quoted Vahidi as saying.
Press TV's characteristically awkward translation continued: “Israeli officials’ remarks about launching an attack against Iran are ridicules [sic].”
According to Press TV, Vahidi made the comments on Thursday, a day ahead of the UN nuclear watchdog's latest report on the Iranian nuclear program.
The report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Iran has yet to clarify a discrepancy in uranium quantities at a Tehran research site after measurements by international inspectors last year failed to match the amount declared by the laboratory.
The United States has expressed concern the material may have been diverted to suspected weapons-related research activity.
UN inspectors have sought information from Iran to help explain the issue after their inventory last August of natural uranium metal and process waste at the research facility in Tehran measured 19.8 kg less than the laboratory's count.
Experts say such a small quantity of natural uranium could not be used for a bomb, but that the metal could be relevant to weapons-linked tests.
"The discrepancy remains to be clarified," said report, issued to IAEA member states on Friday evening.
Reuters contributed to this report.
Jerusalem Post Annual Conference. Buy it now, Special offer. Come meet Israel's top leaders