India has more nuclear weapons than Pakistan
    Swedish think-tank says

    WORLD  18 June 2024 - 12:33

    Nine nuclear-armed nations including the US, Russia, France, China, India and Pakistan, continued to modernise their nuclear arsenals and several of them deployed new nuclear-capable weapon systems in 2023, a Swedish think-tank said on June 17.

    In its analysis, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said China's nuclear arsenal increased from 410 warheads in January 2023 to 500 in January 2024, and it is expected to keep growing, NDTV reports.

    The report said some 2,100 of the deployed warheads were kept in a state of high operational alert on ballistic missiles, and nearly all of them belonged to Russia or the US.

    However, for the first time China is believed to have some warheads on high operational alert, it said.

    The SIPRI said nine nuclear-armed states -- the US, Russia, the UK, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel -- continued to modernise their nuclear arsenals and several deployed new nuclear-armed or nuclear-capable weapon systems in 2023.

    Of the total global inventory of an estimated 12,121 warheads in January 2024, about 9,585 were in military stockpiles for potential use, it said.

    An estimated 3,904 of those warheads were deployed with missiles and aircraft -- 60 more than in January 2023 -- and the rest were in central storage, it said.

    "Around 2,100 of the deployed warheads were kept in a state of high operational alert on ballistic missiles. Nearly all of these warheads belonged to Russia or the US, but for the first time China is believed to have some warheads on high operational alert," the report said.

    According to the think-tank, India, Pakistan and North Korea are all pursuing the capability to deploy multiple warheads on ballistic missiles, something Russia, France, the UK, the US and more recently China already have.

    This would enable a rapid potential increase in deployed warheads, as well as the possibility for nuclear-armed countries to threaten the destruction of significantly more targets, it said.

    The SIPRI said Russia and the US together possess almost 90 per cent of all nuclear weapons.

    Caliber.Az

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