Washington, May 28: The Taliban has said they have no plans to attack Pakistan's nuclear arsenal as it is the only Muslim state to possess such weapons, amid global concerns over the possibility of atomic weapons falling into the hands of terrorists.
Taliban has stepped-up a violent campaign in Pakistan to avenge Osama bin Laden's killing and has renewed fears that the country's warheads could be vulnerable.
Declaring that “Pakistan is the only Muslim nuclear power state,” Taliban Spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan said that his group had no intention of changing the fact, The Wall Street Journal reported. The Taliban, after all, aim to take over Pakistan and its weapons, the paper said.
A well coordinated Taliban attack on Pakistan's key naval airbase in Karachi had triggered fresh global alarm that radical militant groups operating from the country's restive tribal areas bordering Afghanistan might be out to snatch nuclear weapons.
Seeking to dismiss these concerns, Ehsan claimed that the US was using this as an excuse to pressurise Pakistan government and military into fighting Taliban, whom he portrayed as the country's true protectors.
“Isn't it a shame for us to have the Islamic bomb, and even then we are bowing down to the pressures of America?” the Taliban spokesman mocked.
The WSJ said Ehsan's remarks appeared tailored to appeal to that increasingly nationalist mainstream, where conspiracy theories flourish about American, Indian and Israeli plots to deprive Pakistan of its atomic arsenal.
Pakistan's nuclear capability is cherished here as the guarantor of safety from India's far larger conventional military. PTI