Court bars disgraced Pakistan nuke scientist from speaking of proliferation

A court silenced the disgraced architect of Pakistan's atomic weapons program, weeks after he implicated President Pervez Musharraf in the delivery of nuclear technology to North Korea. Abdul Qadeer Khan's wife said the scientist may appeal Monday's ruling, which bars him from speaking about nuclear proliferation and could end his role in throwing more light on Pakistan's murky record of spreading nuclear know-how. Khan has been kept under de facto house arrest in the Pakistani capital since 2004, when he took sole responsibility for leaking atomic secrets to countries including Iran and Libya. However, he recently began agitating for an end to his confinement, disowning his confession in media interviews and saying the army had known all about at least one act of proliferation in 2000 - a claim swiftly denied by Musharraf, who was then chief of the armed forces. The Islamabad High Court, ruling Monday on a petition filed by Khan's lawyer, said the 72-year-old must be allowed to meet close friends and relatives subject to security clearance.