News Digest: Week of June 21

June 21

Energy: The Bushehr nuclear power plant was placed on emergency shutdown for repairs, the Associated Press reported. The shutdown would last three to four days, a state electricity company official said. 

Nuclear: The Saudi foreign minister met with Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in Vienna. The pair discussed "the importance of imposing the necessary mechanisms for a rapid and comprehensive inspection of all Iranian nuclear sites," the foreign ministry tweeted.

Oil: Iran could have as much as 200 million barrels of oil stored in onshore and offshore facilities, Reuters reported. Those stores would allow Iran to export an addition million barrels per day for six months, if U.S. sanctions were removed.  


June 22

Cryptocurrency: Iranian authorities seized 7,000 machines that were mining cryptocurrency. The machines were located in an abandoned factory in west Tehran, the police chief said. On May 26, Iran banned cryptocurrency mining for four months due to the large amount of power it requires.

Disinformation: The United States took down three dozen websites affiliated with Iran and its proxies. Thirty-three websites were used by the Iranian Islamic Radio and Television Union, which had conducted "disinformation campaigns and malign influence operations," the Justice Department said in a statement. Three others were operated by Kataib Hezbollah, an Iraqi Shiite militia group. The website domains were owned by U.S. companies and were being operated without required licenses from the Treasury. 




June 23

Nuclear: Iran said that it would allow its monitoring deal with the IAEA to expire on June 24 before deciding whether to extend it. "After the expiration of the agreement's deadline, Iran's Supreme National Security Council (will) decide about the agreement's extension at its first meeting," presidential chief of staff Mahmoud Vaezi said. 

Sabotage: Iran claimed that it had thwarted "sabotage" against a civilian nuclear site. The supposed attack targeted the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran but caused "no casualties or damages to properties," state news agency IRNA reported

Space: Iran conducted a failed satellite-launch on June 12, CNN reported. Satellite imagery showed preparations for a launch at the Imam Khomeini Spaceport in Semnan province on June 6.  "U.S. Space Command is aware of the Iranian rocket launch failure which occurred early June 12th," Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Uriah Orland told CNN. The U.S. military also assessed that the Noor satellite launched in April 2020 was "not operational."