Pakistan nuclear material among least secure in the world: Report

Published: January 12, 2012
Pakistan second behind North Korea in list of countries with least secured nuclear material.

Pakistan second behind North Korea in list of countries with least secured nuclear material.

WASHINGTON: A Nuclear Threat Initiative index ranks Pakistan second behind North Korea as having the least secure nuclear material, hence posing the most risk, experts said on Wednesday.

The index, which gave rankings on a scale of 100, listed Australia as having the tightest security controls among nations with nuclear material.

The Nuclear Threat Initiative, in a project led by former US senator Sam Nunn and the Economist Intelligence Unit, aims to draw attention to steps that nations can take to ensure the safety of the world’s most destructive weapons.

Among 32 nations that possess at least one kilogram of weapons-usable nuclear materials, Australia was ranked as the most secure. It was followed by European nations led by Hungary, the Czech Republic and Switzerland.

On the bottom of the list, North Korea was ranked as the least secure of its nuclear material, edging out Pakistan. It also listed Iran, Vietnam and India below the 50-point threshold.

“This is not about congratulating some countries and chastising others. We are highlighting the universal responsibility of states to secure the world’s most dangerous materials,” said Nunn, who has long been active on nuclear safety.

Nunn, a Democrat who represented Georgia in the Senate from 1972 until early 1997, voiced concern that the world had a “perfect storm” – an ample supply of weapons-usable nuclear materials and terrorists who want them.

“We know that to get the materials they need, terrorists will go where the material is most vulnerable. Global nuclear security is only as strong as the weakest link in the chain,” he said.

The index, timed ahead of the March summit on nuclear security in South Korea, called for the world to set benchmarks and to hold nations accountable for nuclear safety.

It also urged nations to stop increasing stocks of weapons-usable material and to make public their security regulations.

North Korea has tested two nuclear bombs and in 2009 renounced a US-backed agreement on denuclearization. The world has watched warily since last month as young Kim Jong-Un takes over as leader from his late father Kim Jong-Il.

Pakistan has vigorously defended its right to nuclear weapons. The father of Pakistan’s atomic bomb, Abdul Qadeer Khan, admitted in 2004 that he ran a nuclear black market selling secrets to Iran, Libya and North Korea but later retracted his remarks.

Australia does not have nuclear weapons and supports their abolition. But it has a security alliance with the United States and holds the world’s largest reserves of uranium.

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Reader Comments (43)

  • Mard-e-Haq
    Jan 12, 2012 - 1:37AM

    Awww.. We missed the top spot. Again!!


  • shazada zahid mahmoud loan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 1:44AM

    This is another ploy used by the supporters of India/United States/Israel to discredit and apply pressure on Pakistan. In fact these think tanks are nothing more then the terrorist cells created by CIA/MOSSAD and the Indians to present Pakistan in a bad way. They can do what they want, our nuclear weapons are here to stay and are the safest. Israeli and Indian nuclear weapons are the least safest followed by the Americans since they used 2 of them so that is a precedent to go bye. There is a real possiblity that the MOSSAD will steal American weapons and will give them to the terrorists and will claim they have come from Pakistan.Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli
    Jan 12, 2012 - 1:59AM

    Tomato is vegitable or fruit????? we gonna called what ever we want……


  • asif
    Jan 12, 2012 - 2:01AM

    what about Israel?
    These hypocrite senators and congressmen.


  • Ali
    Jan 12, 2012 - 2:02AM

    So US will take our nukes for safe keeping now?


  • Nadeem Chaudhry
    Jan 12, 2012 - 2:02AM

    Nuclear weapons should be abolished once and for all for the safety of all of humanity and our future generations……western nations should take the lead in this matter and nuclear weapons in all shapes and sizes should be abolished…..


  • Jan 12, 2012 - 2:14AM

    false flag…. its safe in hands of talibans… USA can never reach there.


  • Fahad Raza
    Jan 12, 2012 - 2:22AM

    The Old Capitol has nothing new.. same old rhetorics


  • Z Ali
    Jan 12, 2012 - 3:49AM

    Wow – what a surprise… a US/Western analysis decides that the countries they like least are the most insecure. Most of these surveys are based on complete rubbish and should not be taken seriously. Basically just a political stick to beat people with.


  • Hu Jintao
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:42AM

    ET why do you even publish these non sense “reports” knowing fully well what is their agenda.

    Do you we really care what some former senator of police state has to say?


  • Roflcopter
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:45AM

    The report says “Pakistan does not score as well as it could have because of a lack of publicly available information regarding Security and Control Measures” Their ranking of India and North Korea is also based on no information. So basically their rankings are pointless as they are not even based on any kind of credible information…now how this takes to a pointless report to mean “Pakistan nuclear material among the least secure in the world”? Recommend

  • ABC
    Jan 12, 2012 - 5:41AM



  • Cautious
    Jan 12, 2012 - 5:52AM

    Not surprising – it takes a lot of money/resources to control nuclear material and it’s logical that poor countries have less control than rich countries.


  • SAF
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:06AM

    any research or poll cannot have any credit value unless the method of data collection or source of the data is not clear….So Whats the basis of this report…??? Recommend

  • Hu Jintao
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:34AM

    @Zaid Hamid:
    Yeah right imposter!


  • Noor
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:01AM

    Another bundle of lies!

    Now US has been identified as a public liar since the Obama’s statement regarding Raymond.

    Every few months US certifies safety of Pakistani assets, and when they’re unhappy over something, they start maligning.

    Allah’s curse is on the liars


  • RizwanTKhan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:32AM

    Hahhahahaha. And we thought we should trust International media lol.


  • Truth
    Jan 12, 2012 - 12:17PM

    US senators are the biggest threat to world peace. Recommend

  • Jp
    Jan 12, 2012 - 12:25PM

    Pak nukes are safe in the hands of Gilani & Kayani. But the problem is they are not safe after memo gate


  • Jan 12, 2012 - 1:03PM

    @Hu Jintao:
    yes.. I am imposter…
    Who are you? Chinese premier?


  • Circus watcher
    Jan 12, 2012 - 1:34PM

    When Kayani and Zardari are not safe from each other, when BB can be assasinated, Mush is threatened, how can nukes be safe??.
    No one is safe in Pakistan. Rougue Agencies and state sponsored non state actors, and jihadi terrorists lurk everywhere. All in world community are worried.


  • Faraz
    Jan 12, 2012 - 1:38PM

    To the author of this article,
    Any Report from US is as credible as the report claiming weapons of mass destruction in iraq. The report asks nations to declare security?…seriously?
    How did they get info fort the report? Tell us the nations security forces gave it to a congressman. Voting gimmick congressman?Recommend

  • quack
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:04PM

    Amazing ! This report did not rank Israel as being the most secure? The Yanks appear to be slipping.

    Remember that Israel actually loaded it’s F-4 Phantom aircraft with nuclear weapons destined to be used against Egypt during the Yom Kippur war.

    I’d give about equal credence to this report as that oft stated US claim of spreading “Freedom & Democracy” while propping up sadistic psychopaths such as Pinochet of Chile, the late Shah of Iran + Hosni Mubarak of Egypt.


  • Salman Sheikh
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:29PM

    Well said brother….Bunch of lies again and again. No one care about the reports of Nuclear Material is being sold in Indian Market. and how Israel got the nuke?? As for the reference They steal it from US Ship now who is talking about security??? any guess???


  • vasan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:30PM

    I always thought that Pakistanis themselves are the lease secured. How can their nuclear assets be well secured then ?


  • Umer
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:41PM

    @Hu Jintao:

    ET why do you even publish these non
    sense “reports” knowing fully well
    what is their agenda.

    Unfortunately ET does not know their agenda. This psychic ability is apparently bestowed on only a few.


  • Khawaja
    Jan 12, 2012 - 4:49PM

    Relax, we’re still not that far away from other important nations (even with the bias that I presume this report might have)… here’s the overall score of the bottom most countries:

    Israel 56
    Uzbekistan 55
    China 52
    India 49
    Vietnam 48
    Iran 46
    Pakistan 41
    North Korea 37

    btw Australia scored 94 while U.S scored 78


  • Ali
    Jan 12, 2012 - 6:26PM

    I have also done a research which accounts any nation who can nuke others. Amongst all the nations only USA has used it on Japan and since that no official efforts have been done by USA to prevent themselves of future use and to apologise with the world or even With Japanese.
    Let’s cut it short and come to the conclusion that only USA has the risk of using it again and they should give up the nuclear weapon rather than putting their nose in someone else’s plate.
    Pointing finger on others is easy.


  • roma
    Jan 12, 2012 - 6:50PM

    @Khawaja: – HOE CAN THAT BE?? i have 68 for india and 39 for pak – wherer you getting your rankings from ??


  • HumeBastich
    Jan 12, 2012 - 8:28PM

    @Salman Sheikh
    India and Israel built their own weapons. The World knows Pakistan bought its nukes from North Korea.


  • anwar
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:00PM

    This story by the Tribune is misleading as expected


  • hamza khan
    Jan 12, 2012 - 9:10PM


    lies. no one ‘builds’ their own weapons. go read a book. and pakistan did not buy its from north koreaRecommend

  • rk from NY
    Jan 12, 2012 - 10:42PM

    hahaha..looks like US is going to be taking over your nukes anytime now…!!!!!! what will be your identity without your nukes..??? …start burning effigies and flags …your usual things…


  • Jan 12, 2012 - 11:04PM

    Whenever Pakistani catch the Tail of USA. UNO IAEO world bank IMF civil organisatin of USA anD Starts shouting against Pakistan The Muslim bomb. Ok WE ARE READY FOR SANCTIONS BUT WITH CLOSED SUPPLY ROUTES TO AFGHANISTAN and CLOSED PERSIAN GULFRecommend

  • Jan 12, 2012 - 11:14PM

    Vienna,January 12,2012
    Where was Uncle Sam Nun when Hiroshima & Nagasaki were
    bombed out in August 1945 ? Then the U.S. Three Mile Island
    reactor leaked? The first case was deliberate, the second was
    accident.Can the U.S. see just below its own nose ? Or
    for that matter what is at stake for the Economist Intelligence
    Unit other than self publicity? Take it easy friends.Bopal Bgum´s
    boy Abdul Qadeer Khan was no more than a fig leaf for Gen.
    Parvez Musharraf. Why Sam Nun and Economic Intelligence
    Unit hit the poor undefended Abdul Qadeer Khan below the
    belt? For whoe benefit? No serious jokers.
    Taravadu Taranga Trust for Media Monitoring TTTMM India
    –Kulamarva Balakrishna


  • Pakistani
    Jan 12, 2012 - 11:52PM

    Shame ET Shame


  • Hu Jintao
    Jan 13, 2012 - 4:29AM

    @Gen Hamid Gul:
    I’m am posting by their name and not as that particular person. Get my drift?
    Quit making yourself silly


  • Shaheryar
    Jan 13, 2012 - 12:59PM

    What a cheap try! Now all we have to do is to say” No we are very secure” and they will say” ok, we would like to inspect !!” and then the game begins. Don’t they understand that they need to be more imaginative then that??


  • Salman Sheikh
    Jan 13, 2012 - 4:29PM

    LOL..where did you get these lame news. Recommend

  • Salman Sheikh
    Jan 13, 2012 - 4:33PM

    Boy.. grow up…have you know who is the nuclear scientist for Israel?? .. I bet you never knew who was he.. so search google for the references and enlighten your brain size.


    Jan 13, 2012 - 5:32PM

    Pakistan should not get unduly preturbed by this report since it can always trust India whom it has recently conferred with Most favourite nation title and keep the nuclear toys in safe custody of its neighbour incase of any danger from any country or militant organisation which would be returned as and when asked from India. Remember Iraq parked its jets in Iran its worst enemy during US-Iraq war.


  • j. von hettlingen
    Jan 14, 2012 - 3:42AM

    Pervez Musharraf had once said in an interview that Pakistan’s nukes are constantly on the move, from one location to the other. That’s why the West is worried that they would fall into the hands of terrorists.


  • Javed
    Jan 16, 2012 - 11:32AM

    Its not the nuclear material but nuclear waste we should all be worried about.


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