Pakistan concerned over India’s uranium seizure

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Pakistan FO

Pakistan expressed “serious concern” over reports that more than seven kilograms of natural uranium had been seized in India on Saturday.

In a tweet, Foreign Office’s spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said, “Security of nuclear materials should be a top priority for all countries.”

He said that a comprehensive inquiry into how such a large amount of uranium might become accessible outside of state control, as well as the loopholes that enabled this to happen, is needed.

Uranium is used in a variety of applications, including nuclear weapons and surgical procedures.

Last Wednesday, Indian police in the western Maharashtra State confiscated more than seven kilograms of natural uranium worth $2.9 million and detained two men for “illegally possessing” the highly radioactive material.

After a study from the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in Mumbai reported that the confiscated substance was extremely radioactive, a complaint was filed under the Atomic Energy Act of 1962 against both the defendants, 27-year-old Jigar Jayesh Pandya and 31-year-old Abu Tahir Afzal Hussain Choudhary.

This is the second time in two years that police in India have confiscated highly radioactive material. In the Maharashtra city of Thane, police intercepted nearly 9kg (19.8 pounds) of depleted uranium in 2016.

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