A secretive Israeli nuclear facility is undergoing what looks to be its most major construction project in several decades. Satellite images were released by the Associated Press (AP) showing digging at the area of the facility about the size of a football ground. The construction is likely to be several stories deep and lies at the distance of a few meters from an ageing reactor at the Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center near the city of Dimona. The Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center is said to be at the epicenter of Israel’s de-facto and undercover atomic weapons program. However, the AP has not been able to establish what the construction is for.
Israel is considered as one of the only nine countries in possession of nuclear arms. Yet, the number of nuclear weapons the state possesses remains unknown. It is anticipated that the amount of nuclear weapons possessed by Israel is at least 80, which could be transported by land-based ballistic missiles, fighter jets, or submarines. The construction comes as Israel, under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, upholds its scathing criticism of Iran’s nuclear program and the developments revolving around the US-Iran dispute with regards to the Iran nuclear deal.