Skip to comments.The Pakistan-North Korean Nexus
Posted on 05/22/2010 10:17:39 PM PDT by ErnstStavroBlofeld
Pakistan's arms supply relationship with North Korea dates back to 1971 when the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, then foreign minister under the late General Yahya Khan, visited Pyongyang and sought North Korean arms supplies to strengthen the Pakistani armed forces in the face of a looming war with India.
Pakistan then did not have diplomatic relations with North Korea. The visit led to the signing of an agreement on September 18, 1971, 10 weeks before the outbreak of the war with India, for the supply of North Korea-made conventional weapons to Pakistan.
Under another agreement signed the same day, the two countries agreed to set up mutual consular relations, which were upgraded to full-fledged diplomatic relations on November 9, 1972.
Under the September agreement, Pakistan received from North Korea, in return for payment in US dollars, many shipments of items such as rocket launchers, ammunition, etc. In the 1980s, Pakistan also acted as an intermediary in facilitating arms supply agreements concluded by Pyongyang with Libya and Iran. During the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s, North Korea became the principal supplier of weapons to Iran, which was the target of an arms embargo imposed by the Western countries.
To escape detection by Western intelligence agencies, North Korean arms shipments meant for Iran used to be received by sea at Karachi and from there transported in Pakistani trucks to Iran across Balochistan. Amongst the supplies made by North Korea to Iran via Karachi were more than 100 Scud-B (known as the Hwasong 5 in North Korea) ballistic missiles and equipment for the assembly, maintenance and ultimate production of these missiles on Iranian territory.
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There is no ‘if’. There is only ‘when’ at this point I fear.