News / USA

Pakistan Dismisses Fears over Safety of its Nuclear Weapons

Pakistan  Dismisses Fears over Safety of  its Nuclear Weapons
Pakistan Dismisses Fears over Safety of its Nuclear Weapons
TEXT SIZE - +

Pakistan's foreign office on Wednesday dismissed fears over the safety of the nation's nuclear weapons revealed in leaked U.S. diplomatic cables.

The French News Agency quoted Pakistani foreign office spokesman Abdul Basit saying those "fears are misplaced."

U.S. diplomatic cables released by the website WikiLeaks show concerns about the security of Pakistani nuclear material and Islamabad's commitment to fighting insurgents along the country's border with Afghanistan.

The New York Times and The Guardian reported details of the cables Wednesday.

In a February 2009 cable, the U.S. ambassador to Pakistan, Anne Patterson, said American officials were concerned that someone working in a Pakistani nuclear facility could "gradually smuggle enough material out to make a weapon."

Another report said more financial or military assistance from the U.S. would not stop Pakistan from continuing to support Islamist militants, which Islamabad sees as part of its security strategy against rival India.

Meanwhile, Interpol has placed WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on its most-wanted list after Sweden issued an arrest warrant for him as part of a rape investigation. The alert is likely to make international travel more difficult for Assange, whose whereabouts are unknown.

The latest round of leaked cables also said that small teams of U.S. special forces have operated inside Pakistan's tribal areas with the government's consent. They also show reports that Pakistan had delayed its promised transfer of spent nuclear fuel to the United States. Pakistani officials warned American officials that local media would portray the transfer as "the U.S. taking Pakistan's nuclear weapons."

The U.S. government is working to prevent future spills of U.S. secrets like the release of thousands of classified documents by WikiLeaks.

Officials said Tuesday that the U.S. State Department cut off the military's access to its database of diplomatic cables in an attempt to prevent another data leak.

Officials suspect a former intelligence analyst with access to the military's classified network - known as SIPRNet, or the Secret Internet Protocol Router Network - was the source for the leaked documents.

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said the WikiLeaks release is embarrassing, but is not having a big impact.

Cables released Tuesday reveal that most of the 200 U.S. tactical nuclear weapons based in Europe are located in Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Turkey. The countries have long been suspected of housing the warheads, but the leaked cables appear to be confirmation of that information.

A NATO spokeswoman told VOA Tuesday the leaking of any classified information, diplomatic or military, was "illegal, irresponsible and dangerous." Oana Lungescu declined further comment, saying that as a matter of policy NATO does not comment on classified information.

Other U.S. diplomatic cables leaked by WikiLeaks say Afghan President Hamid Karzai freed detainees without trial in Afghanistan because they had powerful connections. Afghanistan has not commented on Tuesday's disclosure.

The United States has condemned the WikiLeaks release of more than a quarter-million sensitive U.S. diplomatic cables.

The website has not identified the source of the documents. A U.S. Army intelligence analyst, Bradley Manning, was arrested earlier this year and is in military custody awaiting trial for allegedly leaking a 2007 video of a helicopter strike in Iraq and classified diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks.

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid