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Pak envoy defends nuke programme

world Updated: Dec 01, 2010 21:38 IST

Pakistan's envoy in London lashed out on Wednesday at the recent WikiLeaks revelations about his country's nuclear programme, assuring it was safeguarded and slamming Western powers as hypocrites for saying otherwise.

The fact that Western powers could not prevent the WikiLeaks release - which consisted of more than 200,000 US diplomatic cables containing diplomatic opinions on a variety of issues - would have negative consequences, Wajid Shamsul Hasan told BBC in an interview.

In particular, he rejected US and British concerns, laid out in the cables, that Pakistan's political situation was too unstable to guarantee safeguarding of its nuclear arsenal.

"We have every credential to safeguard our own nuclear arsenal," Hasan said, adding that Pakistan would not allow "interference" with its programmes.

The leaked US documents also questioned whether the Pakistani government was doing enough to effectively fight militants and Taliban agents operating in its territory, according to excerpts printed in the The Guardian newspaper.