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Bush Calls For Global Crackdown on WMD - 2004-02-12


President Bush has called for a greater international push against the spread of weapons of mass destruction.

During an address at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C. Wednesday, he called for preventing countries from acquiring nuclear enrichment and reprocessing technology under the guise of building civilian power facilities.

The president also called for more international help to secure vulnerable nuclear arsenals in the former Soviet Union.

The president outlined several steps to control the spread of sensitive technology. Those steps encourage legitimate technology suppliers to stop selling sensitive nuclear equipment to Iran and other countries accused of trying to develop banned weapons.

Mr. Bush also renewed his call for the U.N. Security Council to approve a resolution criminalizing the proliferation of banned weapons and enacting strict export controls.

The speech comes less than a week after top Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan admitted selling nuclear technology to Iran, North Korea and Libya.

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf -- a key U.S. ally in the war on terror -- immediately pardoned the scientist, but later linked the pardon to the outcome of an ongoing Pakistani security probe.

President Bush said Mr. Musharraf has promised that Pakistan will never again be a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction.

Information for this report is provided by AP and Reuters.

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