Pakistani Nuclear Safeguards in Place, Mullen Says
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Nov. 15, 2007 – U.S. officials are satisfied that Pakistani nuclear weapons are under sufficient security, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said today.
During a Pentagon news conference, Navy Adm. Michael G. Mullen said that while there has been a lot of discussion about the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons, “I’d like to be very clear, I don’t see any indication right now that security of those weapons is in jeopardy,… .”
U.S. officials are watchful, as they should be, he said.
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf placed the country under “emergency measures” – essentially martial law – Nov. 3. Under the measures, Musharraf also suspended Pakistan’s constitution, deposed the nation’s supreme court chief and deployed troops to fight what he called rising Islamic extremism.
Military-to-military contacts between the United States and Pakistan continue, Mullen said. “I see no disruption to that because the emergency measures are in place,” he said.
The chairman also said he sees no indication of, nor does he anticipate, an interruption in the supply line through Pakistan to U.S. forces fighting in Afghanistan.
In fact, he said, there are no major changes to our military relations with Pakistan.
“We’d certainly like to see the emergency measures end as soon as possible, but I believe that militarily the situation is stable,” Mullen said.
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