Pakistan says its nuclear assets are safe from terrorists

Pakistan has become more alert to the possible threat posed by Islamic terrorists to its nuclear facilities in recent months but its security system is fail-safe and would prevent the Taliban or al-Qaida from ever gaining control of the weapons, officials said Saturday. Khalid Kidwai, the retired general who heads the Strategic Plans Division that handles Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, said about 10,000 soldiers were deployed to secure the facilities as part of a command and control system headed by President Pervez Musharraf and other top military and political leaders. "There's no conceivable scenario, political or violent, in which Pakistan will fall to extremists of the al-Qaida or Taliban type," Kidwai said at a briefing for foreign journalists. "Pakistan's nuclear weapons, fissile material and infrastructure are absolutely safe and secure."