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Pak to review status if India resumes tests

The foreign ministry says N-test resumption will create a serious situation and Pak will have to take action that is consistent with its interests.

world Updated: Aug 26, 2007 19:37 IST

Pakistan warned on Monday it will review its position on the unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing if India resumes tests.

"Pakistan seriously takes assertions of Indian leadership about possibility of resuming nuclear tests," Pakistani Foreign Ministry spokesperson Tasnim Aslam told reporters at the weekly briefing in Islamabad.

She referred to the statements emanating from New Delhi in the wake of the Indo-US nuclear deal and said these should be a source of concern not just for Pakistan but to the international community as well. "Such statements are coming when Indian nuclear capability would be augmented by nuclear agreement with the United States and access to latest technology," Aslam said.

The spokesperson said Pakistan continues to maintain a unilateral moratorium on testing and has proposed to India a bilateral agreement on test ban.

Resumption of nuclear tests by India would create a serious situation and Pakistan will have to review its position and take action that is consistent with its supreme national interests, Aslam said.

About the Australian decision to sell uranium to India, the spokesperson said like Indo-US nuclear accord this deal also warrants close attention. "Any development that can impinge on strategic balance in South Asia is a matter of vital concern to Pakistan," the spokesperson said.

Pakistan does not want a nuclear arms race in the region but at the same time it is committed to maintaining a credible minimum deterrence in the interest of strategic balance, which is vital for regional peace, she said.

The spokesperson pointed out that Pakistan also has its energy needs and its energy plans include development of nuclear power plants.
"Pakistan wants to develop nuclear power under international safeguards," said Aslam. She said Pakistan hoped that the nuclear suppliers group would realise Islamabad's needs as well.

The spokesperson said Pakistan is fully committed to non-proliferation and it believes that for effectiveness of global nuclear non-proliferation regime Pakistan must be treated and viewed as a partner.

She demanded that the nuclear suppliers group should adopt a criteria based approach for nuclear cooperation.

First Published: Aug 20, 2007 19:29 IST