Pakistan Missile Update - 2003

The Risk Report
Volume 9 Number 6 (November-December 2003)

Missile tests

Pakistan continues to develop its ballistic missile capability with foreign assistance and has pursued an ambitious testing program. In May 2002, Pakistan flight-tested its solid-fueled Abdali (Hatf 2) and Ghaznavi (Hatf 3) missiles, as well as its liquid-fueled Ghauri (Hatf 5) missile. The Shaheen I (Hatf 4) solid-fueled missile was flown in October 2002 and the Abdali missile again in March 2003. The Bush administration expressed its "disappointment" after both the May and October 2002 missile tests. In October 2003, Pakistan launched another series of tests in which it flight-tested the Ghaznavi and Shaheen I missiles.

Missile deployment

The Ghauri, or Hatf 5, which was bought from North Korea and is a version of the North Korean No Dong, was handed over to the Pakistani army by the Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) in January 2003. It has a 1000-1100 kilometer range and can carry a 700 kilogram payload. In March 2003, the Shaheen I, or Hatf-4, solid-fueled missile was turned over to the Pakistani Army's Strategic Force Command. The Shaheen I is reportedly based on the Chinese M-9 missile, which according to one report, has a range of 200-600 km and a payload capacity of 950 kg.

Foreign assistance

In its most recent world-wide assessment of missile proliferation, the CIA reports that Chinese companies are continuing to assist Pakistan's ballistic missile effort. China has helped Pakistan move toward the serial production of solid-propellant SRBMs, such as the Shaheen I, Abdali and Ghaznavi, and Pakistan will be looking for continued Chinese assistance in the development of the solid-propellant Shaheen II MRBM, according to the CIA.

In September 2001, the United States sanctioned the China Metallurgical Equipment Corporation (CMEC) for proliferating missile technology to Pakistan's National Development Complex (NDC). In transferring Category II items under the Missile Technology Control Regime, the CMEC acted in violation of China's November 2000 nonproliferation commitment, which according to the U.S. State Department was a pledge "not to assist in any way other countries to develop ballistic missiles that can be used to deliver nuclear weapons..." Pakistan's NDC was also sanctioned.

In March 2003, the United States imposed sanctions against one Pakistani and one North Korean entity "for specific missile-related transfers." Pakistan's Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) was sanctioned under U.S. executive order 12938, and North Korea's Changgwang Sinyong Corporation was sanctioned under the U.S. missile sanctions law. A report in The Washington Times said the sanctions involved the transfer of fully-assembled, nuclear-capable No Dong missiles from North Korea to Pakistan. According to press reports citing American intelligence officials, Pakistan obtained the ballistic missile hardware in exchange for supplying North Korea the gas centrifuge technology needed to make highly enriched uranium, and American spy satellites tracked a Pakistani aircraft (an American-built C-130) as it was loaded with ballistic missile parts in a North Korean airfield in July 2002.

Pakistan's ballistic missiles

Hatf 1

Hatf 1A

Abdali (Hatf 2)

Ghaznavi (Hatf 3)

Shaheen I (Hatf 4)

Shaheen II

Ghauri (Hatf 5)