dimona reactor 298.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
President Shimon Peres' office
denied allegations on Monday made by British newspaper the Guardian, in
which it accuses Israel of offering to sell nuclear weapons to South
Africa's apartheid regime.The story alleges that
in 1975, South African Defense Minister PW Botha met secretly with
Shimon Peres, Israel's defense minister at the time, in which Botha
requested the weapons and Peres offered three warhead versions for sale.
"We regret that the newspaper did not
find it right to ask for an official response and examine the facts with
official Israeli sources," the president's office explained.
sources added that "there is no doubt these papers that allegedly
document a nuclear missiles sales deal are completely fabricated."
not an animal
In the same
meeting the two also signed a secret cooperation
agreement between the military forces of the two countries.
The Guardian report claims that it
contains “The first documentary evidence” of
Israel’s possession of nuclear weapons.
revelations are supported by South African documents uncovered by
American Academic Sasha Polakow-Suransky for his book The Unspoken Alliance: Israel's secret
alliance with apartheid South Africa.
published a photo showing the signatures of Peres and Botha on the 1975
military agreement between the countries.
alleges that the
documents confirm accounts by Dieter Gerhardt, a South African naval
commander jailed in 1984 for spying for the Soviets. After his release
and the end of the Apartheid regime, he said that Israel offered eight
Jericho ballistic missiles armed with “special warheads” to South
The Guardian reports that cost
considerations prevented Botha from concluding the deal, which also
would have to be approved by Israel's Prime Minister, an approval which
"it is uncertain [whether] it would have been forthcoming."
South Africa went on to develop its own nuclear weapons, which were
deactivated after the collapse of the Apartheid Regime in 1994.
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