Dr A Q Khan’s 13-Page Confession
I was in Belgium in December 1971 and had just submitted by Ph.D. thesis when I saw the most painful and humiliating scenes of the surrender of the Pakistan Army in Dacca. To see our officers and jawans with crosses on their backs and their heads shaven being herded like cattle by Indian soldiers being kicked and hit with sticks was such a traumatic scene that I would never forget it my whole life long. In May 1974 I was working as a Senior Scientist at FDO in Amsterdam and had specialized in uranium enrichment technology, the most advanced and the most complicated technology that the Dutch, the Germans and the British had perfected after spending billions of dollars over a 20 year period. Even today it is the best technology for enriching uranium. On 18th May, 1974 the Indians exploded their first nuclear weapon.
Appreciating the immediate dangers posed to Pakistan’s security and very existence, I offered my services to the Prime Minister, Mr. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. On 20th December 1974 I paid a short visit and explained the whole process to the Prime Minister and told him that I could give Pakistan nuclear capability. After explaining the process to Munir Ahmed Khan, Chairman PAEC, we went back to Holland. On 21st December 1975 we again came on holiday. I went to see the progress of the work done in one year, which turned out to be almost nil. I explained this to the Prime Minister, who asked me to stay back and send my resignation to FDO. It was a tough decision for me and my family but we decided to stay so I could serve my beloved Pakistan. I was appointed Advisor to PAEC in June 1976. For six months I had worked without being paid and under miserable and disgusting conditions. I was later paid Rs. 3,000 per month. Working under PAEC proved to be impossible, hence the Prime Minister detached the Project from PAEC and made it independent under a Board of Coordination with Mr. A.G.M. Kazi (Chairman), Mr. Agha Shahi (Secretary General Foreign Affairs) and Mr. Ghulam Ishaq Khan (Secretary General Defence ) as members. We were to work directly under the Prime Minister. One should not forget that I had brought with me technology, experience and personal notes worth billions of dollars. Without my knowledge and experience, Pakistan could never - repeat never - have become a nuclear power. It was only because of my initiative, knowledge and achievements that our nation can walk straight and tall today! How I organized the work, set up the facilities and organized a most efficient network of companies to import materials and equipment is part of our history. I personally supervised each and every aspect of the Project and prepared the drawings and specifications to give to the suppliers. I trained hundreds of scientists and engineers who were initially totally ignorant of this high technology. The speed of the work and our achievements surprised our worst enemies and adversaries and the West stood helplessly by to see a Third World nation, unable even to produce bicycle chains or sewing needles, mastering the most advanced nuclear technology in the shortest possible span of time. Our mastery of this most advanced and invaluable technology enabled us to sign a historic contract for a giant plant in China. Because of my assistance to the Chinese, they in turn helped Munir Ahmed Khan in various projects that had been stagnating for years (i.e. UF6, Reprocessing, Conversion, Production Reactor etc.). By 1984 we had conducted successful cold tests and had manufactured all components for 30 nuclear devices. Upon my personal request, the Chinese Minister for Nuclear Technology had gifted us 50kg of weapon-grade enriched uranium, enough for 2 weapons. This gift clearly illustrates the importance the Chinese attached to the enrichment technology they received from me. I had asked for this to neutralize Indian nuclear blackmail and the imminent security threat to our country. Work was progressing very fast and I worked 14 to 16 hours a day, 7 days a week to get the job done against all odds, against all embargoes and despite the non-availability of trained manpower or expertise. In August 1988 President Gen. Zia-ul Haq died in a tragic air crash. Elections were held and Benazir Bhutto became the Prime Minister. Gen. Imtiaz, former M.S. to Mr. Bhutto, became Advisor on Defence to the Prime Minister and took over the supervision of the nuclear programme. In 1985 the revolution in Iran took place and there were many in Pakistan who sympathized with the revolution and change of dress code. Kahuta had a large number of Shias working there. One senior officer, Hanif Khalil, was even reported to have contacted the Iranian Ambassador, Mr. Mousavi, but, apprehensive of overzealousness and leakage to favour Iran, I warned him to be more cautious and carefull. In 1989 or 1990 COAS, Gen. Aslam Beg, promised to give the Iranians a few weapons and technology in lieu of 10 years of our defence budget. The Iranian Army Chief, Shamkani, flew to Islamabad in his own plane to pick up the weapons and papers. Admiral Sirohey as Chairman JCSC had a hard time trying to get out of this commitment, in which he succeeded. Later there was a lot of pressure by the COAS on Gen. Imtiaz and P.M. Benazir Bhutto to honour his commitment. Under pressure, Gen. Imtiaz asked Dr. Hashmi (I was out of station) to give some centrifuge parts and drawings etc. to the Iranians. He (Hashmi) asked him to wait until my return. When I got back, Gen. Imtiaz advised me to get components of two old (P-1) discarded machines and pack them into boxes together with 2 sets of drawings prepared by the late Mr. Khokhar. These drawings on their own were not sufficiently detailed to enable mastery of this difficult technology. The components and drawings were handed over to the late Dr. M.Z. Niazi for further disposal. As you know, Dr. Niazi was a confidante of Benazir Bhutto and Gen. Imtiaz. It was some time in 1994 or 1995 that Dr. Niazi requested me to see a few Iranian scientists passing through Karachi from China on their way to Dubai and then on to Teheran. I met them in our guesthouse in Karachi for about half an hour. I did not know any of them and they didn’t give any names. They said that they could not make any progress with their programme and asked whether it would be possible for me to visit them or to send a team for a few weeks. I flatly told them that it was not possible to have that kind of contact. They then asked a few simple questions and I advised them to study the available scientific literature, which contained all the information they were asking for. They seemed to be ignorant of the basic knowledge available in publications. During Gen. Zia’s rule, Benazir, her family, Gen. Imtiaz and Dr. Niazi were financially supported by Col. Gaddafi. It was reliably reported that Col. Gaddafi had given $ 200 million to the late Mr. Z.A. Bhutto to launch our nuclear programme. This was confirmed by Mr. Khalid Hassan, Press Secretary to Mr. Bhutto, in the mischievous BBC film “Project 706 - The Islamic Bomb”. I believe that one set of the drawings and components given by me was given to the Iranians and the other to the Libyans. Dr. Z.K. Niazi used to travel between Dubai, Tripoli and London and in Dubai he became friendly with Farooq of Sri Lanka through a British common friend named Peter. He probably brought a Libyan in contact with Farooq and asked him to arrange a meeting during one of my trips to Turkey. Once when we went to Istanbul (I donot know the date) to have discussions with Dr. Heilingbrunner, Lerch and Ruegg, Farooq (Sri Lanka) told me that a friend of Dr. Niazi’s would like to see me in the nearby Sheraton Hotel. We were staying at Hotel Dilson, Taksim Square. I met the gentleman, a plump darkish person who introduced himself as Magid or Mageed. He said that they wanted to start some R & D programme in the enrichment field and had been given assurances of Pakistan Government assistance. I said they lacked the trained manpower and infra-structure. He said that they could still start learning and do some laboratory experiments. I gave him a brief idea of how complex and difficult the whole technology was. After about half an hour we left and he said he would contact Farooq (Sri Lanka) whenever necessary. He was not a technical person. We did not hear from them for years and then during one of our trips to Turkey to meet our Turkish and Swiss suppliers, Tahir (nephew of Farooq) said that his uncle had phoned to say that a gentleman from Libya was there to see us. I met this gentleman with Tahir. He was of medium stature, average weight and a bit bald. He introduced himself as an Engineer and the name I understood was Mahfooz (you mentioned it as Matooq). He said he was now planning to start the programme as nothing had been done so far and he wanted to start on a small laboratory scale. I told him the plant needed a lot of space and many workshops and manpower. He said that they could go underground, to which I replied that it was not possible for such a big plant with all the facilities to go underground. Since he was planning on a small scale, he thought they might set up a farm of camels or goats and put one or two small sheds in between to put up the laboratory and start training the people in various technologies (vacuum, welding process, computer etc.). I suggested they first send enough people abroad for degrees/training and then start the research programme. He seemed to like that idea. We met for about half an hour at the most. We did not meet again for a long time. After 4 or 5 years, while in Dubai, Tahir invited us to dinner in his flat and the whole Matooq family (9 or 10 people) was there too. He said that they were now starting the work and that he was in touch with foreign suppliers. These had agreed to supply components, equipment etc. through Dubai and other countries. I just listened, being sure in my mind that there was not a committed approach and that they would not be able to achieve much. What they needed was commitment and trained manpower, neither of which they had. I met this same gentleman at dinner at Tahir’s place once or twice more over a period of 4 to 5 years. On those occasions he never discussed any technical matters or asked any questions. I only heard him discuss payment problems to suppliers with Tahir. Tahir once mentioned that Matooq was always taking away quite a bit of money for his personal use. There was always a young man named Karim with him. The last time I met him was in Casablanca for half an hour at tea when we were going to Timbuktu. Tahir said he had asked to see him there as the suppliers were making his life difficult. Tahir asked him to send some money as quickly as possible as the suppliers were pressing him very hard and chasing him. Matooq neither gave me any detail of his work nor asked any questions. I was aware that Tahir was assisting him with the placing of orders according to the supplier’s quotations. It was business between user and supplier. The suppliers had all the drawings that we had originally given them as well as their own modified drawings and were, thus, in a position to supply the requested or suggested products, make their own suggestions and/or submit quotations. Even when we met the last time, I was sure that the Libyans were unable to run any machine properly, not to talk of enrichment. Since I never visited their country or saw any film of their facilities, I did not know anything about their programme. I had heard that they had not even erected a single shed to do some preliminary work. Western suppliers were supplying components etc. and one factory in Malaysia, owned by the son of the Malaysian Prime Minister, Ahmad Badawi, was producing milk/oil tankers, liquid petroleum tankers etc. A Swiss Engineer had put up some machines in this factory to manufacture some components. The components intercepted on the ship near Italy were reportedly manufactured there. Pakistan or KRL had nothing whatsoever to do with it. At one time Tahir asked if he could hire some retired/nearly retired engineers for his factory. Farooq (KRL) was quite unhappy at being demoted and was interested in a good job. Mr. Nasimuddin was nearing LPR and wanted to find a job abroad as his children were studying in the U.S.A. I asked them to send their C.V.s to Malaysia. Mr. Nasimuddin paid a visit there but did not like the place and preferred a government job in the Middle East. Farooq showed some interest, but then preferred to stay back as he was hoping that Mr. Azmat would retire and that he would again be promoted to the post of D.G. That was the end of their interest in Malaysia. If the Libyans have any papers/drawings bearing our name or signatures etc, they must have obtained them either from Farooq (Sri Lanka), Tahir or our old suppliers, as the two first-mentioned had them in Dubai for our use. I have heard that Tahir is being interrogated by the Malysian, American and British authorities and is telling all sorts of stories to save himself. He must be saying the things that the interrogators want to hear from him, even though they may be incorrect. I did not ask anybody in KRL to send any gas to Libya and it is impossible to get 2 tons of gas out of Kahuta without this discrepancy being found out or caught. Our material balance sheet is foolproof. If one believes in the disappearance of this quantity of gas, one could also accept the possibility of the disappearance of Kg 200 or 300 weapon-grade material, which is also impossible. The suggestion that I ever asked for a Libyan passport is both ludicrous and preposterous. I lived in Europe for 15 years and could have got nationality of Germany, Holland or Belgium, but I was proud to keep my Pakistani passport. H.H. Prince Mamdouh bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud, brother of King Fahd, offered us (Gen. Chowhan, Dr. Nazeer and me) Saudi passports during one of our visists to the Islamic Development Bank meetings in Jeddah, but I very politely refused. H.H. Gen. Shaikh Mohammad bin Zayed, Chief of the U.A.E. Armed Forces and Deputy Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, offered me U.A.E. nationality many times together with a luxurious villa, which I also politely refused. I discarded all these lucrative and attractive offers and preferred to work and live in Pakistan.
The Iranians went on their own to buy, process or manufacture components and equipment. We did not hear from them for years. Some 10 odd years ago Tahir asked for some P-1 components from Farooq (KRL). I don’t remember the exact details. As you mentioned, some small components (200 sets) were collected from our old, discarded stock or a few may have been manufactured and sent by Farooq (KRL) to Tahir, who then probably passed them on to some Iranians. There were no casings, bases, feed systems, scoops etc. Without this system the machine is useless and hence the components were of little value in the overall project. Furthermore, the components were old, mostly rejected due to being out-of-tolerances. They could, at the most, be useful for assembling a few machines but it would not have been possible to make them run to the desired speed. You have to be extremely competent and expert to assemble, balance and run these machines to full speed (63,000 rpm). I allowed it as it was earlier sanctioned by Gen. Imtiaz and the Government and it would keep the Iranians happy and our friendship with them in tact. That the Iranians failed to achieve any progress in 15 years, shows the complexities and extreme technical expertise required to master this technology. It is most unfortunate that, having been betrayed by their own opposition nationals (Mujahideen Khalq Group) and having failed in their effort to achieve any progress, the Iranians have reportedly pointed their finger at us and are now putting us into trouble. They say that they have not given any names or sources from Pakistan. This was emphatically assured and conveyed to me through Izaz Jaffery by ex-Ambassador Agha Siraj Mousavi himself. The spirit behind giving some assistance to Iran or Libya was to maintain friendly relations between them and us. At no time did I seriously believe that they were capable of mastering this technology as they didn’t have the required infra-structure, the trained manpower or the technical know-how.
After approval from the Prime Minister and the COAS, a contract was signed with the North Koreans for a Km 1500 surface-to-surface guided missile. A delegation led by me and including Gen. Mian Mushtaq, DGCD, Admiral Sohail Ahmed Khan, Col. Qazi, Dr. Mirza, Nasim Khan and others visited North Korea for about 5 days. Later their team came here and the deal was finalized with the participation of the then DGCD, Gen. Ziauddin, Dr. Samar Mubarakmand and Chairman Suparco, Mr. Sikander. The Korean team was officially allowed to stay at Kahuta once the products started coming. This was some time in 1993-4. They had to work in the shops and instruct our engineers and technicians in the making of the components. Most of their work was in the two machine shops that were also producing and assembling centrifuges and centrifuge sub-assemblies. They became interested in the technology and some engineers spent a lot of time with Khokhar in his shop where rotor tubes, bellows, etc. were being made and there was a test-bed of P-2. Khokhar was making the liquid fuel rocket engine and needed the Koreans the whole day on a daily basis. During the course of their stay it is quite possible that he explained some details of centrifuge machines to them. Some time in 1996, when the missile project was in full swing, some payments from the GHQ to the Koreans were pending. Somebody from GHQ advised Gen Kang, the Korean representative, to pay some money to Gen. Ziauddin to get the money released. Gen. Kang gave him a suitcase containing $ 0.5 million. Gen. Ziauddin informed Gen. Waheed, COAS, and they returned the money to Kang. Gen. J. Karamat, CGS, came to know of this and phoned me after a few days saying that I should arrange with Gen. Kang to pay this money to him for some secret army funds. He would then sanction the payment of their outstanding charges. He phoned me a few times to expedite the matter. I talked to Gen. Kang and he gave me the $ 0.5 million in cash, which I personally delivered to Gen. J. Karamat. In the meantime Gen. Karamat became COAS and said to me that he needed more money for the same secret funds and that I should talk to Gen. Kang. Gen. Kang came back to me after a few days and said that his boss was willing to give a further $ 2.5 million, provided we helped them with the enrichment technology. They already had a production reactor and were producing plutonium. They had also manufactured a few weapons as, according to Gen. Kang’s boss, they had received Kg 200 plutonium and weapon designs from the Russians in the mid-fifties after the Korean War. They had shown Dr. Mirza and me the perfect nuclear weapon, technologically more advanced than ours. They wanted this technology only for fuel for the power reactors as it cost only 1/10 of that of the diffusion process and required only low capital investment. They were not interested in weapon-grade production of material and did not ask any questions or for drawings for specially designed cascades for weapon-grade material. I informed Gen. J. Karamat; he agreed and gave me a go-ahead. I asked my people to prepare 20 outdated P-1 machines and gave them. Since they were working in the plant and were familiar with the P-2 machines, they asked for 4 of these too. I discussed the matter with the COAS and obtained his approval. After that I personally gave the remaining $ 2.5 million to Gen. Karamat in cash at the Army House to make up the whole amount. The senior engineers at Kahuta were responsible for the Korean’s movements and work. People at the plant were mixing with them every day and taking them around or discussing things with them. I was hardly there. I used to go to Kahuta for 3 or 4 hours to do administrative work and mostly spent the time in my office or with Brig. Behram who was making a launcher, which was our priority at the time. The Koreans took the machines in their own plane with which they were bringing missile parts for us. Security Staff was always present to check incoming and outgoing cargo. Even Dr. Mirza and Nasim Khan made some control panels and software packages and gave them. The Koreans had brought some UF6 gas for analysis, which we tested and found that it was not pure enough. They requested a few Kg of depleted gas for comparison purposes, which we gave them. Technically and monetarily it had no value. One could buy such a sample from abroad. One flowmeter was given to them as a sample. A flowmeter is an ordinary instrument in a UF6 plant. It is banned for Pakistan but available in the open market in Europe. They, in return, taught us how to make Krytrons (fast switches), which were banned items and are needed in nuclear weapons detonation. This was very valuable to us. After having been here for years, the COAS (Gen. Pervez Musharraf) desired that we should send the Koreans back immediately. They left within 3 days. After that we had no more contact with them. I left KRL on 31.3.2001 and that was that. As far as the destroying of any papers or gate passes is concerned, I only advised people not to keep any papers or records that could implicate Pakistan with transfer of technology or equipment to North Korea at any later stage. At that time there were various lobbies against Pakistan and I feared that these papers could, if falling into wrong hands, be used to implicate Pakistan. It was only meant as a precautionary measure. I have done nothing against the interests of Pakistan and whatever I did could not have resulted in proliferation of nuclear weapons. It was primarily meant to keep up our friendship with those countries that had been helping Pakistan from time to time. I would like to reiterate that I never - repeat never - ever put foot on Iranian or Libyan soil. In early 1989 Gen. Aslam Beg asked me if I could help the Iranians in enrichment technology so that they could also achieve nuclear capability. He was convinced that, if Iran had this capability, it would work as a shield between Pakistan on the one side and the U.S.A. and other Western countries on the other side and that these countries would then not be able to undertake any mischievous or adventurous action against Pakistan. I agreed in principle, but told him I could only do so with a go-ahead from the Government. When Gen. Imtiaz told me to do the needful, I did so as I knew he must have obtained clearance from the Prime Minister. So also was the case with Libya. Dr. Zafar Niazi told me that it had been cleared by the Prime Minister, upon which I took the necessary action.
The A Q Khan Report by Pakistan’s ISI
After hearing press complaints and information coming out from various sources after agreements, first by Iran and then Libya, to abandon their programmes of weapons of mass destruction, the Government of Pakistan took a very serious note of the allegations made by various international newspapers and media and started an intensive, thorough and aggressive investigation against a number of scientists and engineers who had anything to do with the production, assembling and testing of centrifuge components and machines as well as those responsible for the import and export of equipment and materials. The Director General of Security and the Director General of Maintenance and General Services were also detained for thorough investigation.
The Principal Engineer of the Design Office, who had been abroad for 4 years, had just returned and was also detained. Similarly, the Director General Process Division who was responsible for keeping records of UF6 gas and the Director General Health Physics who kept the records of incoming natural gas and outgoing depleted gas, uranium metal etc. were also detained. The founding father of KRL, Dr. A.Q. Khan, was also interrogated 3 times for many hours by the DG ISI and the DG SPD. The investigation has yielded the following results:
1. When the organization was set up in mid 1976, a free hand was given to the Project Director to acquire each and everything through any means. There was a direct and imminent threat to Pakistan’s security and existence in the wake of the dismemberment of the country in 1971 and after the Indian nuclear test in 1974.
2. Gen. Ziaul Haq had openly proclaimed that to “beg, borrow or steal” was the policy of the day in the light of the imposition of stringent embargoes and restrictions on any nuclear-related materials and equipment to Pakistan.
3. Pakistan, being an under-developed country with no industrial infrastructure, had to buy each and every bit of material and piece of equipment surreptitiously from abroad in the open market and had to establish a network of cover companies within the country and outside to by-pass embargoes and import all the necessary items. Such companies were operating in Kuwait, Bahrain, the UAE, Singapore, the UK, Germany, Luxembourg, Switzerland, etc.
4. Since no industrial infra-structure was available within the country, production drawing of all the components of the centrifuge machines were sent to England, France, Germany, Switzerland, Holland etc. for the placing of orders for the thousands of components and equipment required in order to expedite the work, which was a race against time.
5. Dubai, having no customs formalities or restrictions and no financial impediments, was made the main operating centre. All the foreign suppliers (Dutch, British, French, Turkish, Belgian, Swiss, German etc.) were regularly coming to Dubai to discuss offers and orders. A company named Ben Belilah Enterprises BBE), owned by an Arab police officer, was introduced by Mr. A. Salam, a British national. BBE had a Sri Lankan Manager named Farooq. Salam and Farooq, both being Tamils, were good friends. Due to the frequent meetings between our experts and the foreign suppliers, sets of almost all the drawings were kept in Dubai in a flat that had been rented especially for this purpose so they wouldn’t have to be carried to and fro all the time.
6. Due to religious and idealogical affinity, Pakistanis had great affection for Iran. Former COAS, Gen. Aslam Beg was in favour of very close cooperation in the nuclear field in lieu of financial assistance promised to him towards Pakistan’s defence budget. Benazir Bhutto’s government came under a lot of pressure for cooperation and under this pressure and the decision/approval/directive of Gen. Imtiaz Ali, Adviser on Defence (including nuclear matters) to the Prime Minister, KRL gave some drawings and components to Iran for R & D work. The information given was by no means sufficient to enable Iran to establish even a small pilot plant, not to talk of a fully fledged centrifuge plant or produce nuclear weapons. The Iranians already had excellent contacts with European suppliers and they also started importing components and equipment through Dubai (Farooq). For some time there was close cooperation through Farooq. The Iranians wanted drawings etc. of valves, inverters, control panels, cascades etc. from Farooq and they gave him $ 5 million to help them in their efforts to acquire this information. Farooq gave some money to Dr. Niazi who had arranged the initial contact between him (Farooq) and the Iranians and some he transferred to his own accounts. Part of the money was put in an account in the fictitious name of Haider Zaman, which first Farooq and later on Tahir (Farooq’s nephew) and Dr. A.Q. Khan could operate. This account was opened personally by Farooq. Some of the money from this account was used by Tahir for payments etc. and some was donated for vaious social, educational and welfare projects undertaken by Dr. A.Q. Khan in Pakistan.
7. The Iranians needed some P-1 (early discarded model) components. They approached Tahir to request Farooq, an engineer in KRL, to send them these components. These were old components that were no longer being used by KRL and were not sufficient or adequate for the establishment of a small pilot plant or to produce nuclear weapons.
8. If it is true, but this is highly unlikely, that there were some traces of uranium in the Iranian facilities, there is just the remotest off chance that one or more KRL components inadvertently had traces of UF6 gas on them that had not been properly decontaminated before shipment.
9. Farooq (Sri Lanka) was the main contact with the Libyans through Dr. Niazi. He brought the suppliers in contact with them and gave copies of all the drawings etc. which Dr. A.Q. Khan had kept in Dubai for discussions with the suppliers. These drawings also included those of the device, as Dr. Khan was ordering components from England, Switzerland etc. His own old notes were also kept there for necessary use. Farooq and/or Tahir had access to the flat as they were maintaining it and they must have given copies of all the papers to the Libyans. The Libyans gave Farooq/Tahir $5 million, some of which they gave to Dr. Niazi, some they transferred to India, Singapore etc. and some was put in the account of the fictitious Haider Zaman. Some money from this account was used by Tahir for payments to suppliers etc. and some was again donated for social, welfare and educational projects in Pakistan run by Dr. Khan.
10. The Iranian affair was closed long ago, but the Libyans were trying to acquire components and equipment from abroad via Dubai either through Tahir or directly from other suppliers in Europe.
11. Whatever assistance was given was done in order to maintain friendly relations between the concerned country and us. It was never seriously believed this would lead to anything as they were scientifically and technologically backward countries unable even to establish a pilot plant of this nature or produce nuclear weapons.
12. It is most unfortunate that these things happened due to the peculiar nature of the circumstances and loose arrangements in those early days and because of the personal obligations of previous governments to these countries. There is a very strict command and control system now under the National Command Authority and nothing can be leaked out or taken away from any facilities any more. Fortunately, these happenings have not done irreparable damage to weapons control regimes and have awakened everyone all over the world to the danger of the vast underground network of western suppliers of this most sensitive and dangerous technology.
Letter Written by Dr A Q Khan to His Wife
If the government plays any mischief with me take a tough stand:
(1)You know we had cooperation with China for 15 years. We put up a centrifuge plant at Hanzhong (250km south-west of Xian). We sent 135 C-130 plane loads of machines, inverters, valves, flow meters, pressure gauges. Our teams stayed there for weeks to help and their teams stayed here for weeks at a time. Late minister Liu We, V. M. [vice minister] Li Chew, Vice Minister Jiang Shengjie used to visit us.
(2)The Chinese gave us drawings of the nuclear weapon, gave us kg50 enriched uranium, gave us 10 tons of UF6 (natural) and 5 tons of UF6 (3%). Chinese helped PAEC [Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, the rival organisation to the Khan Research Laboratories] in setting up UF6 plant, production reactor for plutonium and reprocessing plant.
(3) Probably with the blessings of BB [Benazir Bhutto] & Gen [Aslam] Beg , Gen Imtiaz asked Hashmi [a former colleague of AQK] & me to give a set of drawings and some components to the Iranians. We had no direct contact and we never sent anybody or received anybody. The names and addresses of suppliers were also given to the Iranians. [Note in margin] Gave these things through Dr Niazi [Bhutto family dentist and confidant, now dead]. Must have got money for it ($1 million).
(4) Gen Jehangir Karamat [still alive, chief of army staff 1996-8, sent by Musharraf as ambassador to U.S. 2004-2006] took $3 million through me from the N Koreans and asked me to give them some drawings and machines.
(5) We sold [conventional] weapons to Libya, Sudan and Malaysia. And sent [conventional] weapons to Bosnia. [Khan’s KRL plant also made anti-tank missiles and shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles.]
(6) There is proof of all this stashed somewhere safely which will be given to public and press.
Use Major Islam or Hashmi [former colleagues of A Q Khan] and get S M Zafar [lawyer of AQK] to take up these matters in court/public. Get in touch with Simon Henderson and give him all the details. Ask Henk [Slebos, part of Khan’s purchasing network in The Netherlands] to get a guy from Telegraaf and give him all the details. Tell them the bastards first used us and now playing dirty games with us.
Khantje [diminutive name used between Khan and his wife]
Get out quickly to Dubai with Tanya [grand-daughter who lives with them] for a while or leave Tanya with Ayesha [daughter who lives in Islamabad]. I believe they want to make me a scapegoat as Mr Wajid Shamsul Hassan (former HC [high commissioner] in London) had warned in an article (with Major Islam). They might try to get rid of me to cover up all the things (dirty) they got done by me in connection with Iran, Libya & N. Korea. This is just to forewarn you.
Dr A Q Khan
NI & Bar, HI
General Jehangir Karamat’s Letter to Fox News
Dear Ms Browne,
Thank you for reaching out to me prior to your planned broadcast and website postings. I am sure that a prestigious news organization like the Fox News will satisfy themselves about the authenticity and credibility of sources, documents, letters, statements etc because many of these have been in circulation and have been changing hands for years even as new fabricated ones keep cropping up. There are obviously many motivations for this activity. None of the information that you have asked me to comment upon is new. It has all been published before in different formats and pertains to events almost fifteen years ago. The entire proliferation episode actually spans a much longer period with more than one country involved. The total episode was the subject of an exhaustive and thorough investigation before it was formally closed. The allegations and information surfacing now have to be seen in this overall context as regards their timing and motivation as well as coincidence with other currently ongoing situations----these aspects will inevitably be discussed. Having retired in 1998 I was not privy to the details of the proliferation episode and the final investigation report. I can only comment on the specific issues that concern me and are supposedly from ‘statements made during investigations’. The allegation that I accepted any payment from Dr Khan for letting him pass on material to North Korea is preposterous, false and a malicious fabrication. In fact if such an allegation has been made then it fully implicates Dr Khan in ‘one on one’ dealing with another country including receiving money. Where that money subsequently went (if it was paid) is speculation and no one persons word can be accepted especially if that person was actually involved in such matters over a prolonged period. I doubt that Dr Khan would put himself in such a position because it in no way clears him—it actually implicates him. I categorically deny this baseless allegation because I never asked Dr Khan to pass on to the North Koreans ‘drawings and machines’ related to uranium enrichment. As CGS I was not in a position to demand anything from Dr A Q Khan. He was neither my subordinate nor could I delay or sanction payments to him or anyone else. I had nothing to do with the payments or the program. I am also sure that a person of Dr Khan’s standing would not get into the business of carting around money in brief cases like a bagman. If any illegal demands were being made then those could, and should have been reported to my superiors because the CGS was never in the loop on matters pertaining to the nuclear program. I am not aware of the dealings between ‘Kang’ and Dr Khan or anyone else. I have no knowledge of the details of the North Korean program that are given in your note. I do know that as COAS I did not personally control any enrichment program and that GHQ never made payments of any sort to anyone. All contact was through designated staff and GHQ had nothing to do with contractual payments. There were never any ‘secret funds’. All contracts were between governments with laid down channels for payment—these could not be violated or circumvented. No contract with North Korea was signed during my tenure as COAS. Any material given or received outside the ongoing contracts by the person in charge of those materials was illegal. There was no reason for anyone to make any payment to me at Army House or anywhere else—no such payments were ever made because no transfer of material was ever authorized by me. The comments about the status of the North Korean program and the details given are something that I do not know about and therefore cannot comment upon. All this has been written about before and if you so desire I can try and locate that article and forward it to you. This probably pertains to a much later period 1999-2003 possibly so the question of anyone asking me for permission to transfer material does not arise. This never happened. I am not sure who is being indicated when it is said that ‘since they were working in the plant with P-2 machines’ but if it implies North Koreans then their presence was completely illegal and unauthorized. I would seriously question such an assertion. Finally let me say that as a rule I do not get into correspondence or discussion over such issues because no country would want its responsible people to publicly debate sensitive matters. I have given you my views frankly and I hope you will use this material judiciously.
With best wishes and regards
Compiled by PRASUN SENGUPTA