People seek help from 'retired' Pak nuke scientist

Eli Lake:

Scientists, engineers and financiers involved in the A.Q. Khan nuclear-smuggling network are being contacted by several governments in an effort to lure these specialists out of retirement.

The development is raising concerns among U.S. intelligence agencies about the revival of the proliferation network that was thought to have been shut down years ago.

Two U.S. intelligence officials and other U.S. officials with access to intelligence reports said information compiled over the past seven months showed that agents from several foreign governments — including Brazil, Burma, Iran, Nigeria, North Korea, Sudan and Syria — pursued members of the network named after Abdul Qadeer Khan, the scientist considered to be the father of Pakistan's nuclear weapons program.

"They have propositioned them to get them to come out of retirement," one senior U.S. intelligence officer said.

This official, however, stressed that the contacts observed in recent months did not necessarily reflect a state-level decision by countries such as Brazil and Nigeria regarding nuclear proliferation. "These could be people acting on their own," this official said.

These guys were largely responsible for most of the nuclear proliferation of the last two decades. They need to stay shut down and we need to be monitoring anyone who contacted them for what ever reason.


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