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Khan Research Laboratories (KRL)

Other Name: Kahuta Research Laboratories; Engineering Research Laboratories
Location: Rawalpindi
Subordinate To: Directorate of Scientific and Technical Cooperation
Size: Ghauri Development Area of ~32 buildings, Dynamic Test Facility of 1 isolated building, sparsely developed engine test area [1]
Facility Status: Active

While more frequently associated with Pakistan’s nuclear program, Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) also figures prominently in Pakistan’s medium-range liquid-fueled ballistic missile development history. [2] A historical competitor to Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission’s solid-fueled ballistic missile initiatives, the 1999-2001 command-and-control reforms consolidated the bulk of missile development activities under the National Defence Complex (NDC). [3][4] KRL, however, continues to contribute to the development of the Ghauri missiles. [5]

KRL’s missile development efforts focused on liquid-fueled medium-range missiles built with North Korean assistance.  On 6 April 1998, KRL held a test flight of the liquid-fueled medium-range Ghauri-1/Hatf-5 missile. [6] Senior U.S. intelligence officials identified the missile as a Nodong missile from North Korea. [7] The same sources also confirmed the launch site as either KRL or an alternate site near Jhelum. [8]

Following the April 1998 Ghauri-1 test-flight, the Clinton Administration imposed sanctions on KRL under the Export Administration Act of 1979 and the Arms Export Control Act. [9] This failed to hamper KRL, as none of the parts or expertise for the Ghauri project came from the Unites States. [10] Development continued, and KRL tested Ghauri-2/Hatf-5A with an improved range of 2,000km, and repeatedly indicated that the Ghauri-3, with a range of 3,000km, was also ready for testing. [11][12] In January 2003, the Ghauri-1 missile entered service in the Pakistan Army. [13] On 23 March 2003, the Bush Administration issued sanctions against KRL and North Korea, ostensibly for missile collaboration. [14]

Sources:

[1] Estimates based on IKONOS satellite imagery: Space Imaging, ikonos_kahuta_010-7, accessed 27 January 2011, GlobalSecurity.org, www.globalsecurity.org; Space Imaging, ikonos_kahuta_005-1, accessed 27 January 2011, GlobalSecurity.org, www.globalsecurity.org; and Space Imaging, ikonos_kahuta_010-8, accessed 27 January 2011, GlobalSecurity.org, www.globalsecurity.org
[2] “Dr. A. Q. Khan Research Laboratories,” Dr. A. Q. Khan Research Laboratories, accessed 27 January 2011, www.krl.com.pk.
[3] Nuclear Black Markets: Pakistan, A.Q. Khan and the Rise of Proliferation Networks – A Net Assessment, (London: The International Institute for Strategic Studies, 2007), p. 22.
[4] Usman Ansari, “Pakistan Pushes to Improve Missile Strike Capability,” DefenseNews, 17 November 2008, www.defensenews.com.
[5] “Pakistan tests ballistic missiles,” Jane’s Missiles and Rockets, 1 July 2004.
[6] “Pakistan Tests Medium-Range Missile,” The Washington Post, 7 April 1998, p. A18 in LexisNexis Academic Universe, www.lexisnexis.com.
[7] “Pakistan’s missile ‘was a Nodong,’” Jane’s Missiles & Rockets (Surrey), 1 May 1998, p. 16.
[8] “Pakistan’s missile ‘was a Nodong,’” Jane’s Missiles & Rockets (Surrey), 1 May 1998, p. 16.
[9] “Bureau of Political-Military Affairs; Imposition of Missile Proliferation Sanctions Against Entities in North Korea and Pakistan,” 63 Federal Register 85 (4 May 1998), p. 24585.
[10] Chidanand Rajghatta, "U.S. Curbs on Pak lab over Ghauri," Indian Express, 5 May 1998, www.indianexpress.com.
[11] “Celebrations in Pakistan as Ghauri II is test-fired,” Rediff on the Net, 14 April 1999.
[12] "Daily Says Pakistan to Test-Fire Ghauri III on 29 May, 3 Jun," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 28 May 2004, in LexisNexis Academic Universe, www.lexisnexis.com; "Pakistan to Test-Fire Ghauri III Missile in October – Daily," BBC Monitoring International Reports, 30 August 2004, in LexisNexis Academic Universe, www.lexisnexis.com.
[13] “Pakistan Army accepts first Ghauri missiles,” Jane’s Missiles and Rockets (Surrey), 22 January 2003.
[14] “Imposition of Nonproliferation Measures on a Foreign Entity, Including a Ban on U.S. Government Procurement,” 63 Federal Register 63 (2 April 2003), pp. 16113 – 16114.

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This material is produced independently for NTI by the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of and has not been independently verified by NTI or its directors, officers, employees, or agents.

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