( AP ) - A satellite photograph of a Syrian site bombed by Israel in September appears to show new construction that resembles the site's former main building, The New York Times reported Saturday.
The Israeli airstrike has been shrouded in mystery for months. Israel has maintained an almost total silence since the Sept. 6 airstrike, which Syria said hit an unused military installation.
Media reports, some quoting unidentified U.S. officials, have said the strike hit a nuclear installation linked to North Korea. Damascus denies it has an undeclared atomic program, and North Korea has said it was not involved in any such project.
The image released Friday came from DigitalGlobe, a private company in Longmont, Colo., The New York Times reported. The image shows a tall, square building under construction that appears to resemble the site's former main structure. The photo was taken from space on Wednesday, the newspaper said.
It could not immediately be independently verified that the satellite photograph was the site hit in the Israeli airstrike. A telephone message left Saturday at DigitalGlobe was not immediately returned.
Syrian officials were not available for comment Saturday, and an Israeli government official said the government was not reacting to the report.
Some analysts have said the satellite images taken before and after the Israeli strike supported suspicions that the target was indeed a reactor and that the site was given a hasty cleanup by the Syrians to remove incriminating evidence. But other analysts have said the satellite images are too grainy to make any conclusive judgment.
Meanwhile, the head U.N. nuclear watchdog, Mohamed ElBaradei, said his agency would like to inspect the Syrian site, according to an interview with the London-based pan-Arab newspaper Al-Hayat dated Tuesday. He also said the photographs so far have indicated that the site was not a nuclear facility.
Syria has signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and allowed agency experts to inspect its only known nuclear facility - a small, 27-kilowatt reactor, according to diplomats linked to the U.N. watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency.