Pak rejects Menon''s concerns about safety of its N-weapons

Rezaul H Laskar

Islamabad, Feb 20 (PTI) Pakistan today rejectedNational Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon''s concerns aboutthe safety of its nuclear weapons and material, saying it had"impeccable" custodial controls for its strategic arsenal.

"Pakistan is a responsible nuclear weapon state withimpeccable credentials and custodial controls of its strategicassets," Foreign Office spokesperson Tehmina Janjua said inresponse to Menon''s comments.

"We are mindful of our responsibilities in the contextof global peace and security and in particular in our largerAsian neighbourhood," she said.

Janjua also noted that "Pakistan has made a sinceregesture in reaching out to India for promoting stability,peace and development in South Asia" and called for a "newmindset" to usher in an "Asian security architecture".

"It is important that all regional states live up totheir responsibilities, on the basis of recognised norms andvalues to promoting an Asian security architecture with anenlightened approach. This requires carefully cultivating anew mindset," she said.

Addressing the Asian Security Conference in New Delhion Friday, Menon had expressed concern about the "security ofnuclear materials and weapons in those same parts of Asia".

Referring to a "growing security deficit" in Asia,Menon said: "There is increasing danger of terrorism spreadingfrom those parts of Asia like Pakistan and Afghanistan, whichhave not been part of the Asian economic movement." PTI RHL

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