Khan gave nuke material to Iran: Pak

Updated on Mar 11, 2005 10:10 AM IST

For the first time Pak has admitted that the rogue nuclear scientist actually supplied centrifuges to Iran.

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PTI | ByAssociated Press, Islamabad

A rogue nuclear scientist who is at the heart of an international nuclear black market investigation gave centrifuges to Iran, but Pakistan's Government knew nothing about the transfer, the information minister said on Thursday.

It is the first time that the Pakistani Government has acknowledged that Abdul Qadeer Khan actually gave material to Iran, though they have admitted in the past that his group sold technology and blueprints to several countries.

"Dr Abdul Qadeer gave some centrifuges to Iran," Information Minister Sheikh

Abdul Qadeer Khan

 Rashid Ahmed told the agency.

"He helped Iran in his personal capacity, and the Pakistan Government had nothing to do with it."

Ahmed originally made the remarks at a seminar in Islamabad organised by a local newspaper group, in which he stuck by Pakistan's insistence that despite his crimes, Khan would never be handed over to a third country for prosecution.

Ahmed said that Islamabad is fully cooperating with the International Atomic Energy Agency, the world's nuclear watchdog.

Khan, considered the father of Pakistan's own nuclear program, confessed last year that he sold nuclear technology to Iran — Pakistan's Southwestern neighbour — as well as North Korea and Libya.

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf pardoned the disgraced scientist and allowed him to keep the riches he allegedly earned from the trade.

However, the scientist remains restricted to his home in an upscale neighbourhood of Islamabad. The Government has steadfastly denied any official involvement in the proliferation. 

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