The Times of India SUNDAY, APRIL 06, 2003
NEW DELHI: For the first time, serious indicators have emerged that two Pakistani nuclear scientists were helping al-Qaeda work on radiological dispersal devices and had provided the terrorist outfit with “a roadmap to building nuclear weapons”, according to a top American expert.
“Al-Qaeda wanted the Pakistani scientists to help in making radiological dispersal devices (Pakistani nuclear scientist Sultan Bashir-ud-din) Mahmood and his colleagues appear to have provided al-Qaeda a road map to building nuclear weapons,” David Albright, President of Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), said in a recent paper.
He, along with another ISIS research analyst Holly Higgins, said the move to provide a roadmap for making a nuclear device was “typically very helpful in understanding the steps that must be accomplished in making a nuclear weapon, identifying the necessary equipment and technology, and locating suppliers of key equipment”.
“In addition, Mahmood and his colleagues appear to have recruited other scientists with more direct knowledge of making nuclear weapons,” they said.
Two nuclear scientists, Mahmood and Chaudhry Abdul Majeed, who had founded ‘Ummah Tameer-e-Nau’ (UTN) purportedly for relief and development work in Afghanistan, had been in close touch with terror mastermind Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaeda leaders.