WikiLeaks: Mubarak refused black market Soviet nukes

Cable reports "Egypt had been offered nuclear scientists, materials following collapse of Soviet Union, but Egypt refused."

December 20, 2010 08:11
1 minute read.
Eyptian President Hosni Mubarak

Hosni Mubarak. (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak refused offers to buy nuclear weapons on the black market following the dismantling of the Soviet Union, a US diplomatic cable leaked to the Guardian by WikiLeaks revealed.

The revelation was made by Maged Abdelaziz, Egypt's UN ambassador, to US nuclear arms control negotiator, Rose Gottemoeller, in May of 2009 on the sidelines of a Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty conference in New York.

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In the leaked cable, Gottemoeller's associates wrote that "in an apparent attempt to portray Egypt as a responsible member of the international community, Abdelaziz claimed that Egypt had been offered nuclear scientists, materials and even weapons following the collapse of the Soviet Union, but Egypt had refused all such offers."

"Gottemoeller asked him how he knew this to be true, to which Abdelaziz replied he was in Moscow at that time and had direct personal knowledge."

Abdelaziz also told Gottemoeller that "Iran cannot be allowed to accquire nuclear weapons."

He expressed concern about Israel's purported nuclear arsenal, saying that "statements from Israeli's prime minister that his state possesses nuclear weapons do not contribute to security or stability."

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