Iran is running a global recruiting network for scientists, in efforts to bring them to the country to work on its nuclear program, officials told the UK newspaper The Telegraph.
The officials claim the country relies particularly on North Korean scientists, but also looks for people with nuclear expertise from African countries to focus on developing missiles and other nuclear production activities, according to The Telegraph.
The Telegraph cites Mohamed Reza Heydari, a former Iranian consul in Oslo, who said he had personally helped several North Koreans come to Iran while working for the foreign ministry.
Heydari said that, "In all our embassies abroad, especially in the African countries, the staff of foreign ministry were always looking for local scientists and technicians who were experts in nuclear technology and offered them lucrative contracts to lure them into Iran.
"The façade of the nuclear program is that it is for peaceful purposes, but behind it they have a completely different agenda."