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Bush to Urge Global Effort Against Spread of WMDs - 2004-02-11

President Bush is expected to call Wednesday for greater international cooperation to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

Administration officials say that in a speech at the National Defense University, Mr. Bush will urge better regulation by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) -- the nuclear regulatory arm of the United Nations.

They say the president will also renew his call for the U.N. Security Council to approve a resolution criminalizing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and enacting strict export controls.

Officials say Mr. Bush will cite the case of Pakistani nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan, who last week publicly admitted selling nuclear secrets to Iran, Libya and North Korea.

Mr. Bush is expected to praise Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf for pledging to put an end to covert transfer of nuclear secrets. General Musharraf, who has pardoned Mr. Khan, also promised to find out everything possible about the illegal network the Pakistani scientist was using, so it can be uprooted entirely.

President Bush is expected to offer new details of Libya's nuclear program, which Tripoli renounced in December, along with chemical and biological weapons programs.

The United States and the international community are trying to halt nuclear programs in both Iran and North Korea.

Iran denies trying to build nuclear weapons, despite IAEA concerns. North Korea is seeking U.S. compensation in exchange for freezing its nuclear arms program.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.