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Pak informed US of nuclear technology transfer

Pak informed US of nuclear technology transfer

Author: Press Trust of India
Publication: The Hindustan Times
Date: December 25, 2002
URL: http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_126606,0005.htm

Pakistan has secretly informed the United States that a number of its scientists and military officers were "personally" involved in providing nuclear arms technology to North Korea, Japanese media reported on Wednesday.

The information was passed on about two years ago in response to a US request for probes into Pakistan's suspected transfer of nuclear arms technology to the communist state, Jiji Press news agency said.

Jiji, quoting intelligence sources, said Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, who ousted then prime minister Nawaz Sharif in a 1999 bloodless coup, set up a investigative team within the army in 2000 to comply with the US request.

But the Pakistani government, in a report to Washington, said it was not involved in the transfer, which it attributed to "personal" links, Jiji said.

The contact has not been made public by either government.

The team discovered remittances worth tens of thousands of dollars had been deposited in the personal accounts of scientists at the Kahuta laboratory outside Islamabad and senior military officers over "a number of years," Jiji said.

Some account owners admitted the remittances were "rewards from North Korea," the agency said.

Transferred technology was related primarily to uranium enrichment, necessary to produce nuclear weapons, and equipment design, Jiji said.

Pakistanis involved in the transfer have since been dismissed or reassigned from their positions, Jiji added.

Sources quoted by Jiji said Pakistan and North Korea began cooperating militarily in the early 1990s under the government of premier Benazir Bhutto.

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