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Pakistan refutes El Baradei, asserts n-weapons secure


Islamabad : Pakistan Wednesday termed as irresponsible a statement of Mohamed El Baradei, director general of the UN’s nuclear watchdog, who said Pakistani nuclear assets were likely to go into wrong hands, the Online news agency reported.

Responding to a question, foreign office spokesman M. Sadiq said in his weekly press briefing here that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was a UN agency, and El Baradei being head of this body has to be careful in his statements.

The IAEA head in his statement overlooked the facts about the Pakistani strategic assets, Sadiq remarked. “Our nuclear assets are safe and are under the multi-layered safeguards and controls exercised by the National Command Authority. The IAEA chief was given briefing on several occasions on the structure and control mechanism about the safety and security of nuclear assets.”

Pakistan is a responsible nuclear state and its strategic assets are safe and secure like that of any other nuclear weapon state, Sadiq said.

“Therefore, we consider statement of Dr. El Baradei fully irresponsible and unwarranted.

Replying to a query, Sadiq said no government had ever expressed concern over the safety of the country’s strategic assets. India too adopted a realistic attitude with regard to the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear assets, he added.

Responding to another question, Sadiq said: “We will broaden our relations with the US no matter who comes to power. The Pakistan-US ties are very critical for peace and security of the entire region.