London, July 26 (ANI): Weapons experts have concluded that Burma is working on a nuclear weapons programme after its existence was exposed by leaked photographs.
According to The Telegraph, secret documents and hundreds of photographs smuggled out of the country by a defector, Sai Thein Win, an army major who is trained as a defence engineer and missile expert, indicate that it was intent on developing nuclear weapons and long-range missiles.
Sai said that he had access to two secret nuclear facilities, including a "nuclear battalion" in the north of Mandalay, "charged with building up a nuclear weapons capability".
Jane's Intelligence Review published a separate batch of photographs showing similar activities in buildings and behind security fences near the capital, Naypyidaw.
The paper quoted a former American senior weapons inspector with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Robert Kelley, as saying that the photographs, which were passed to the Democratic Voice of Burma, a part of the Burmese opposition, showed components built with German machine tools imported through Singapore, which indicates "nefarious purposes."
"They are either trying to make reactor fuel which they could buy for nothing from another country, or they are trying to make a weapon clandestinely," Kelley said.
"The quality of workmanship is extremely poor and their expertise is poor. I am not saying that this is a nuclear weapons programme that is about to scare us tomorrow, what I am saying is the intent to build nuclear weapons is much more clear now," he added.
Although fears that Burma had joined a clandestine nuclear network linking North Korea, Iran, Pakistan and Syria have been growing for some time, there has not been any hard evidence until now. (ANI)