US confident of Pakistan nuclear security

Published: August 17, 2012
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Nuland offered condolences over the attack claimed by the Taliban. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

Nuland offered condolences over the attack claimed by the Taliban. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

WASHINGTON: The United States said on Thursday it was confident of the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal after heavily armed militants stormed an air force base in clashes that left 10 people dead.

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland offered condolences over the attack claimed by the Taliban. She said the United States had no reason to doubt Pakistan’s account that the Minhas base was free of nuclear weapons.

“We have confidence that the government of Pakistan is well aware of the range of potential threats to its nuclear arsenal and has secured its nuclear arsenal accordingly,” Nuland told reporters.

“We do talk about these issues and support Pakistani efforts to keep them secure — we have for quite a long, long time. And we don’t have any reason to be concerned at this moment,” she said.

“Pakistanis have suffered more than their share at the hands of terrorists inside Pakistan, which speaks to our efforts to address this threat together,” Nuland said.

Earlier the US Department of Defense (DoD) spokesperson had said that they have no indication that the Kamra airbase attack endangered Pakistan’s nuclear assets.

Talking to The Express Tribune, Commander Bill Speaks, a spokesperson for the DoD, commended Pakistani security forces in repelling the attack at the PAF base in Kamra, however said that it was a concern, and that they were saddened by it.

“We would also commend Pakistani security forces for their efforts in repelling the attack,” said the Commander.

Reports in the press had indicated that the PAF base in Kamra is home to Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal.

Responding to a question on the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear assets, Commander Speaks said, “We obviously work closely on a regular basis with our Pakistani counterparts to discuss the safety of their nuclear program, and it’s our sense that the Pakistani government maintains good security around their nuclear arsenal. We have no indication that this particular attack endangered Pakistani nuclear assets.”

Earlier on Thursday, Pakistan rejected US concerns that its nuclear assets may fall into the wrong hands, insisting the country’s strategic assets were safe and sound.

During the Foreign Ministry weekly press briefing, spokesperson Moazzam Ali Khan said, “Pakistan’s strategic assets are safe and sound and we have a robust command and control in place, so nobody should worry about the safety and security of our nuclear assets.”

The statements were in reaction to recent remarks made by US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, who feared that Pakistan’s nuclear assets were in danger of falling into the hands of terrorists if terrorism was not controlled in the country.

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Reader Comments (22)

  • Kanwal
    Aug 17, 2012 - 1:19AM

    Oh no! if THEY say so, the assets must be in danger….

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  • Aug 17, 2012 - 1:22AM

    Please help us conquer this militancy.

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  • Ali
    Aug 17, 2012 - 1:26AM

    “US confident of Pakistan nuclear security”

    from what we are seeing…i am sure US will be revise this statement.

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  • AnisAqeel
    Aug 17, 2012 - 1:47AM

    This is a scary thought and devastating for Pakistani military and there is utmost need to abandon the prior military policy and pay 100% attention in improving the quality of our forces and take terrorism with iron fists to combat it.
    All those Mullahs who preach hate and promise paradise for these suicidal fanatics should get immediate and swift justice on treason charges and swiftly be eliminated. If our judiciary interfere they should be blocked effectively as national existential war and treason without our judiciary’s involvement.
    We must take help from other countries like USA & UK without any false pride. If our solders can take their boots to USA & UK for furthering their quality why can’t they come here and assist in combating our existence. Please ABANDON OUR FALSE PRIDE and invite USA to help us.

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  • Sana
    Aug 17, 2012 - 1:55AM

    Who cares what you think ! chipkooos!

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  • Waqas Ali
    Aug 17, 2012 - 2:08AM

    US involved in the attack on kamra air base to conquer the nuclear asserts of Pakistan but he cannot succeeded in his nefarious thinking

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  • @ishiPTI
    Aug 17, 2012 - 2:54AM

    Is this what really gives us confidence?

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  • Rameez
    Aug 17, 2012 - 3:01AM

    And now it the US who will decide whether our nuclear assets are safe or not…!!
    GOD is giving wake up calls to our nation again n again but unfortunately we have such dumb peoples in every row that we are not going to take any thing seriously.!

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  • Amjad
    Aug 17, 2012 - 3:19AM

    When in world people fear Nuclear Weapons. In Pakistan Nuclear Weapons fear people :)

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  • The Truth
    Aug 17, 2012 - 4:04AM

    US doesn’t need to worry about Pakistan nuclear resources.. They should worry of how to get safe exit from Afghanistan.. Its becoming a second Vietnam from them.

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  • Salman mirza
    Aug 17, 2012 - 4:12AM

    Certainly these are not safe. Also nuclear power plants are not safe in Pakistan.

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  • Ali
    Aug 17, 2012 - 4:54AM

    @Waqas Ali

    sitting behind the keyboard of a computer and speculating is no good….

    we need to stop blaming others for our own mistakes.

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  • buraq
    Aug 17, 2012 - 5:02AM

    Regular day of an Indian troll
    1) come to office
    2) take IT desktop support calls
    3) put anti-pak comemnts on ET
    4) take IT desktop support calls
    5) put anti-pak comemnts on ET
    6) eat vegetable stew (wobble head sideways)
    7) put anti-pak comemnts on ET
    8) add a few paki chiks on facebook (wobble head sideways)
    9) go home

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  • Haris Chaudhry
    Aug 17, 2012 - 7:46AM

    “US is confident of Pakistan’s nukes not falling in wrong hands” – Public announcement !!

    In Private, Panetta calls Kayani and says “General, we are sh-t scared of you being unable to guard your most protected places from these thugs and this is the last warning we give you to do something credible to those ‘strategic assets’ or else we might not only take the nukes out but get you guys sorted thoroughly” :)

    Kayani gets the message and assures Panetta that this time they might divorce strategic assets for good.

    Panetta thanks Kayani and gives him 10 days for demonstrable evidence on ground !!

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  • zakria shahwani
    Aug 17, 2012 - 9:22AM

    Repelling action from our already prepared forces for the safety of our planes and arsenal showed that we always are ready to combat any plot and eventuality . The quick action of our force has proved that our forces not only ready to give sacrifice but they always ready to defeat the enemy.

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  • Majid
    Aug 17, 2012 - 9:40AM

    Afghanistan is becoming second VIETNAM for U.S. Afghan taliban are really hard to be defeated. AMAERICA should worry more on its exit strategy from Afghanistan if she has any than the nuclear arsenal of Pakistan.

    More american casualities will be expected if America will keep on playing double game with Pakistan. Many believe the resumption of NATO supllies provided Tehrieke pakistan Taliban the sophisticated weapons, like RPGs, bazooka, from americans to laucnch attacks on Pakistani military installations.

    Syria has been engaged by Americans and similarly America is preparing a case against Pakistan internationally by crying over Pakistan nuclear arsenal safety.

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  • Aftab Kenneth Wilson
    Aug 17, 2012 - 1:33PM

    We should take her words as they are. Perhaps it is in their hands and we are all commenting like ” Marasi ” in the Darbar Of King Akbar.

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  • j. von hettlingen
    Aug 17, 2012 - 5:51PM

    Pervez Musharraf admitted in an interview in November 2011 on GPS/CNN that the nuclear weapons were being moved around the country, He wasn’t informed of when and where they were moved. He could only assure the world that they wouldn’t fall into the hands of terrorists.

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  • k. Salim Jahangir
    Aug 17, 2012 - 8:46PM

    If the US is so confident about security of our Nukes then they should rein in their press which is YELLOW all the way from top to bottom.Anti Pakistan propaganda is not going to make any dent.

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  • Ahmer Ali
    Aug 18, 2012 - 10:56AM

    When the US’ officials shall leave the most ever worst habit of interfering in Pakistan’s extremely confidential matters and giving statements regarding Pakistan’s internal and external security concerns?????

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  • Ahmer Ali
    Aug 18, 2012 - 10:57AM

    When the US’ officials shall leave the most ever worst habit of interfering in Pakistan’s extremely confidential matters and giving statements regarding Pakistan’s internal and external security concerns?????
    Or US’ officials are proving this phrase absolutely rightful,id est,old habit always goes hard……

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  • M.Yaqub
    Aug 18, 2012 - 9:59PM

    What Assets ! They are the LIABILITIES we are carrying. Why don’t we talk with India and de-nuclearize both states.

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