Threat to Pak nukes 'real' due to greedy, incompetent politicians: German expert

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Warsaw, Aug.16 (ANI): Pakistan has been claiming that its nuclear weapons are protected with some world class security measures in place, and that there is no fear of them falling into extremists hands, but according to a German expert the threat to Pakistan's nukes is real.

According to Jochen Hippler, a Pakistan expert at the University of Duisburg , it is very hard to keep the nuclear armaments safe, primarily due to the country's incompetent and corrupt political leaders.

Hippler said the Taliban may never succeed to overcome Pakistani military, however it's the greedy politicians because of whom the country will fail.

"The Taliban will never be able to conquer the country militarily. There is no way to do that. But on the other hand, the Pakistani state may just fail because of incompetence, lack of organization, corruption and because the Pakistani political elite are incredibly incompetent and greedy," Hippler said.

He said that the threat of Islamists infiltrating the Pakistani military has significantly decreased in recent years.

"I would make the point that it is definitely less of a danger than it was 10 or 20 years ago. It was a big deal in the Zia-ul-Haq times," Hippler said.

He stressed on the need for Western countries to reevaluate their priorities in the region to effectively safeguard Pakistan's nuclear arms cache.

"If we think Pakistan is more important than Afghanistan, which it definitely is because of nuclear weapons, because of 170 million people, because of millions of Pakistani migrants in Britain and Canada and elsewhere, then that has to have some repercussions for our Afghan strategy and for our stabilizing strategy for Pakistan," the dw-world.de quoted Hippler, as saying.

International representative of the Arms Control Association, Oliver Meier, highlighted that the theft of nuclear materials could also be used for a radiological attack.

Meier said that while it was pretty difficult to steal an assembled nuclear weapon, links between terror groups and individuals with access to Pakistan's nuclear secrets is a worrying factor.

"There is quite a large danger that people inside Pakistan's nuclear complex might feel tempted to share material or knowledge that could be used to build nuclear weapons with terrorists," he said.

"Given the fact that there are between 7,000 and 8,000 scientists working in the nuclear weapons complex and probably as far as we know about 70,000 people all in all working in the nuclear weapons complex, this is a very large number of people to keep screening," he added. (ANI)

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