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Security of atomic sites top-notch, says Pakistan

03 April, 2009

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VIENNA: Nuclear-armed Pakistan maintains security around atomic sites that is second to none and the world has no cause for concern, a senior Pakistani official said.

Muhammad Khaliq, project director for Pakistan’s Nuclear Security Action Plan, outlined improvements to Pakistani atomic controls to a 90-nation meeting reviewing strategy against possible nuclear terrorism, and in remarks to Reuters.

Pakistan’s government was well aware of fears abroad that its nuclear plants could be vulnerable to militants but “these perceptions are wrong”, said Khaliq, chief scientific officer in the nation’s nuclear regulatory body. “Our nuclear security compares with the best in the world. It is a comprehensive system. International experts tell us we could teach things to their people,” he said on the sidelines of the meeting sponsored by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Pakistan has also installed radioactivity detection equipment at key border points with China, Afghanistan and Iran to prevent any nuclear smuggling.

Khaliq said the move reflected “increased concern about unconventional threats from radioactive sources and materials” but was not a response to any concrete threat or incident, of which he said there were no known instances.


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