A National Defense University report released earlier this month makes a connection between Khan-like networks and nuclear terrorism.
The report from the NDU’s Center for Technology and National Security Policy found that global cooperation between law enforcement agencies and a coordinated nuclear detection network is needed if the world hopes to prevent terrorists from acquiring WMD material.
Such global coordination should be organized through an existing international institution, take authority from UN Security Council Resolution 1540 and involve the expertise of both Interpol and the International Atomic Energy Agency.
The report noted:
The capture and house arrest of AQ Khan have likely slowed down the international nuclear smuggling black market, but other unknown smuggling networks evidently exist. This type of nuclear proliferation presents a serious threat to international security. Among other considerations, North Korea and Iran continue to pursue nuclear weapons programs and will likely seek materials, components, and technical expertise from outside suppliers.
Though, in all fairness we should ask whether the current US-North Korean denuclearization agreement lessens North Korea’s incentive to turn to private sector suppliers.