London, Sept.8 : Security chiefs in the West are claiming that Islamist terrorists are developing a 'dirty' bomb for use against Western targets.
According to them, at least one plot has been uncovered involving Pakistani-based terrorists planning to use nuclear material against a major European target.
The Telegraph also quoted them as saying that other militant Islamist groups in Pakistan, such as the newly formed Pakistani Taliban, have also shown an interest in developing weapons with a nuclear capability, according to Western security officials.
Security chiefs now fear that the mounting political instability in Pakistan will make it easier for militant Islamist groups to develop a primitive nuclear device.
"Islamist militant groups want to carry out terror attacks on a massive scale, and there is no better way for them to achieve that objective than to develop some form of primitive nuclear device," said a senior U.S. security official.
The most likely terror device using nuclear material is a "dirty bomb", where conventional explosives are fitted with radioactive material.
The detonation of such a device in a city like London would provoke widespread panic and chaos, even though the area of contamination would be relatively small. British security officials recently confirmed that they were investigating at least 30 terror plots that originated in Pakistan.