Bush declines to match the US-India civilian nuclear pact with a similar deal for Pakistan

Before the US presidential party arrived in Islamabad from New Delhi Friday, March 3, US secretary of state explained to Indian Zee News TV: “Everyone knows that there have been concerns in terms of proliferation with Pakistan.”
debkafile adds: The Pakistanis pressed for a nuclear deal on the lines US president George W. Bush signed with New Delhi last week because, first, they seek parity with their nuclear neighbor; second, they are worried that the US-Delhi accord will give the Indian nuclear weapons program a substantial edge over Pakistan’s and eliminate its deterrent value.
Apart from deciding in principle to start differentiating between the two Asian powers, Rice touched on the key reason for the US withholding a nuclear pact from Pakistan. Her reference to “proliferation” concerns related to the significant role the father of the Pakistani bomb, Abdel Qader Khan, is known to have played in the development of the North Korean, Iranian and Libyan programs through the black market he ran in nuclear technology and components for all bidders over two decades. The full extent of his operation is still clouded. Washington would like to question A. Q. Khan, but is denied access by president Pervez Musharraf. India’s record on proliferation is by contrast untarnished.

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