Gives Details of Black-Market
February 20, 2004
and father of Pakistan's nuclear program, Abdul Qadeer Khan sold nuclear
weapons-making equipment to Iran for $3 million and had enriched uranium
shipped to Libya for its atomic program, said police, citing the alleged
financier of an international trafficking network.
In the first inside account of the black-market nuclear program, Buhary
Syed Abu Tahir told Malaysian police that Khan asked him to send two containers
of used centrifuge parts from Pakistan to Iran in 1994 or 1995. Tahir
also said Libya received enriched uranium from Pakistan in 2001, police
Officers have been
questioning Mr. Tahir, a Sri Lankan businessman living in Malaysia, over
his role in Dr. Khan's network. Tahir also said Libya received enriched
uranium from Pakistan in 2001.
A report released
by police provides a detailed account of the network headed by Khan, who
confessed earlier this month to leaking nuclear technology to Iran, Libya
and North Korea.
Police said the 12-page report on Tahir's Malaysian connections will be
given to the International Atomic Energy Agency, the Vienna, Austria-based
U.N. organization that oversees the international Nuclear Nonproliferation
insist that they will cooperate if the IAEA seeks further action.
Malaysian authorities he organized the shipment of two containers of centrifuge
parts from Dubai to Iran aboard an Iranian merchant ship, the report says.
Centrifuges are machines that can enrich uranium for weapons and other
for the two containers of centrifuge units, amounting to about $3 million,"
was paid by an unnamed Iranian, the report said.
Khan told him "a certain amount" of enriched uranium was flown
to Libya from Pakistan on a Pakistani airliner in 2001, and a "certain
number" of centrifuges were flown to Libya direct from Pakistan in
2001-02, the report said.
said earlier that Tahir broke no Malaysian laws, but they would keep him
He is a former business
associate of Kamaluddin Abdullah, the son of Malaysian Prime Minister
Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who promised the police investigation would be
conducted "without fear or favor."
company controlled by Kamaluddin, Scomi Precision Engineering, a company
established by Tahir and his brother, has acknowledged making 14 "semifinished
components" — which may amount to thousands of parts — for a Dubai-based
company, Gulf Technical Industries, under a contract negotiated by Tahir.
They were seized in October while being shipped from Dubai to Libya.
Authorities say the
parts were for centrifuges, but Scomi says it did not know what the parts
Minister Syed Hamid Albar complained that his nation has been unfairly
singled out by the United States in calling for a crackdown on the international
nuclear black market.
not be dragged into the debate of being a country that is involved in
the supply of components or otherwise for weapons of mass destruction,"
Sayed Hamid said. "We have no capability." He went on to say
that most nuclear weapons came from Europe and the United States.