HL Deb 25 March 1980 vol 407 cc778-9WA

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will have an English translation made of the report of the Dutch Parliament concerning the activities of the Pakistan spy Dr Abdel Khader Khan; whether they will place a copy of the translation in the Library of this House, and whether in the meanwhile they will make a statement on the capability of Pakistan to develop a centrifuge enrichment plant; whether or not Pakistan has developed or intends to develop such a plant, and what additional security measures are being taken to prevent the transfer of this technology to nations that have not signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty.


On 29th February 1980 the Netherlands Government sent the report of their investigation into the circumstances of the Khan affair to the Netherlands Parliament. The English translation of this report is not yet available, but I will lay a copy of it in the Library as soon as possible.

It is not the Government's intention to issue a statement about Pakistan's nuclear programme. There have been Press reports, based on interviews with members of the Pakistan Government, suggesting that Pakistan is developing an unsafeguarded uranium enrichment facility. The authorities in Pakistan are well aware from our exchanges with them of the concern this causes us.

The security rules and procedures of the tripartite uranium enrichment collaboration are designed to prevent the unauthorised disclosure of classified information. They have been reviewed, in the light of the Khan affair, and their implementation has been strengthened to prevent a repetition.

Any specially designed items of equipment for use in a centrifuge enrichment plant are under export control from the United Kingdom to all destinations.