Military-ruled Myanmar has asserted that none of its agencies is engaged in developing nuclear weapons.
Dismissing such reports as unfounded allegations, the Foreign Ministry blamed political motives for the “fallacious information” that a collaborative project with North Korea was under way.
In comments carried by the state newspaper in Yangon on Saturday, the Ministry said: “Myanmar is just a developing country which lacks sufficient infrastructure, technology, and financial resources to make nuclear weapons.” As a party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the Treaty on Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapons-Free Zone, Myanmar emphasised how it “has been actively participating in the United Nations Conference on Disarmament in Geneva as a founding member”.
The current reports on atomic-arms-related cooperation between Myanmar and North Korea, which had already tested nuclear explosive devices, “lack reliability, objectivity, and impartiality”, said the Foreign Ministry. It was also emphasised that these reports “are based on a single source of some deserters, fugitives, and exiles”.
The Foreign Ministry saw the timing of these “allegations” as “an attempt to tarnish the image of the Myanmar Government” when it was engaged in efforts to hold a general election for “democratic transformation”. The impact of these “allegations” was also being felt on the ongoing engagement between Myanmar and the United States. While a State Department official had “started the engagement process”, a Senator's planned second visit was a follow-up move.