Japanese Firm May Have Sold Iran Nuclear Devices

TOKYO, Aug. 28 — An investigation into a Japanese manufacturer suspected of exporting sophisticated measuring devices to Libya’s former atomic weapons program has increasingly focused on whether the company also sold similar equipment to Iran, a government official said today.

The police and regulators have broadened their investigation of the company, Mitutoyo, a precision instruments maker, as evidence has emerged that it may have also sold equipment to Iran for use in making centrifuges to enrich uranium, said an official in the Trade Ministry, which administers export restrictions.

In April, Iran disclosed that it was trying to build more advanced and powerful centrifuges known as model P-2, which would speed its enrichment program. It is unclear whether the Japanese equipment has been used by Iran to develop the more sophisticated type of centrifuges.

Experts said the investigation also raised new questions about Japan’s success in restricting the flow of military-related technology to restricted countries like Iran.Kensuke Ebata, a military analyst who serves on a Trade Ministry committee on security export controls, said Japan had lacked the intelligence gathering capabilities to monitor its companies. “Japan is a country that lives by exporting massive amounts of high-tech equipment overseas,” Mr. Ebata said. “It’s physically impossible to check every export shipment.”

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I do wonder just how long it would take the jap to make his own bomb if he needed to.
Oh I don't think gerry would be long behind him if felt the need.

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