U.S. says Pakistan made changes to missiles sold for defense

U.S. says Pakistan made changes to missiles sold for defense

The United States has accused Pakistan of illegally modifying American-made missiles to expand its capability to strike land targets, a potential threat to India, according to senior administration and Congressional officials.

The charge, which set off a new outbreak of tensions between the United States and Pakistan, was made in an unpublicized diplomatic protest in late June to Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani and other top Pakistani officials.

The accusation comes at a particularly delicate time, when the administration is asking Congress to approve $7.5 billion in aid to Pakistan over the next five years, and when Washington is pressing a reluctant Pakistani military to focus its attentions on fighting the Taliban, rather than expanding its nuclear and conventional forces aimed at India. [continued…]

Court sets Pakistani scientist at liberty

Lahore’s High Court yesterday ordered that all restrictions be lifted on Dr AQ Khan, Pakistan’s infamous rogue nuclear scientist, believed by many to be the founder of a clandestine weapons proliferation network.

Acting on a petition filed by the scientist, the court said that as of August 28, Dr Khan was a “free man” and would no longer have to alert police to his whereabouts. The decision is likely to raise concern in the United States, where Dr Khan is still considered a proliferation risk.

“Of course I was delighted when my lawyer called me up to give me this good news,” Dr Khan said a few hours after the decision was announced. “I have been waiting for the day when I can move around easily and not be questioned and restricted at every step.” [continued…]

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