Nawaz informed US before conducting nuclear tests in 1998 , reveals bookApril 17th, 2009 - 2:09 pm ICT by ANI
Islamabad, Apr.16 (ANI): Pakistan had given the United States prior intimation about its decision to conduct its first nuclear test, a book authored by Gohar Ayub Khan has revealed.
According to the book titled “Testing Times as Foreign Minister”, Pakistan’s then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had written two separate letters to the then US President Bill Clinton and the UN General Secretary, explaining the reasons behind the nuclear tests which were conducted on May 28, 1998, The News reported.
“Having exhausted all options and left with no choice, we have in our supreme national interest decided to exercise the nuclear option. This decision, which I have taken with a heavy heart, was necessitated by the imperatives of self-defence and to deter aggression against sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of our country,” the excerpt of the letter to Clinton said.
In his letter Sharif also criticized the international community for adopting a lenient attitude towards India following its decision to cross the nuclear threshold.
“While I was deeply appreciative of your personal understanding of our security concerns, the overall international response to India’s crossing of the nuclear threshold was regrettably deferential, bordering on acquiescence. We saw a familiar pattern whereby India’s incremental steps on the nuclear and ballistic ladder had only generated pressures and even punitive actions against Pakistan,” the letter further adds.
Sharif, in his letter, charged India of creating a strategic imbalance in the region by unleashing an overt nuclear weaponisation.
“At this critical juncture, at which our very life and existence are at stake, the people of Pakistan were unanimous in demanding that we seek to rectify the strategic imbalance resulting from nuclear weaponisation by India,” it stated. (ANI)
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