that while sanctions remain effective Iraq would not be able to produce a nuclear
weapon. If they were removed or prove ineffective, it would take Iraq at least five
years to produce sufficient fissile material for a weapon indigenously. However,
we know that Iraq retains expertise and design data relating to nuclear weapons.
We therefore judge that if Iraq obtained fissile material and other essential
components from foreign sources the timeline for production of a nuclear
weapon would be shortened and Iraq could produce a nuclear weapon in
between one and two years.
BALLISTIC MISSILES
Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC) Assessment: 1999 2002
24. In mid 2001 the JIC drew attention to what it described as a  step change  in
progress on the Iraqi missile programme over the previous two years. It was clear
from intelligence that the range of Iraqi missiles which was permitted by the UN
and supposedly limited to 150kms was being extended and that work was under
way on larger engines for longer range missiles.
25. In early 2002 the JIC concluded that Iraq had begun to develop missiles with a
range of over 1,000kms. The JIC assessed that if sanctions remained effective
the Iraqis would not be able to produce such a missile before 2007. Sanctions
and the earlier work of the inspectors had caused significant problems for Iraqi
missile development. In the previous six months Iraqi foreign procurement
efforts for the missile programme had been bolder. The JIC also assessed that
Iraq retained up to 20 al Hussein missiles from before the Gulf War.
The Iraqi ballistic missile programme since 1998
26. Since the Gulf War, Iraq has
been openly developing two
short range missiles up to a
range of 150km, which are
permitted under UN Security
Council Resolution 687. The
al Samoud liquid propellant
missile has been extensively
tested and is being deployed to
military units. Intelligence
FIGURE 4: ABABIL 100
indicates that at least 50 have
been produced. Intelligence also indicates that Iraq has worked on extending its
range to at least 200km in breach of UN Security Resolution 687. Production of
the solid propellant Ababil 100 (Figure 4) is also underway, probably as an
unguided rocket at this stage. There are also plans to extend its range to at least
200km. Compared to liquid propellant missiles, those powered by solid
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