Comparison of Pakistan India and China Nuclear Weapons
According to a report released by international media Pakistan nuclear weapons are in greater number and quality as compared to that of India. Recent estimates by international nuclear watchdogs and reputed think tanks hold that Pakistan has a total of 70 to 90 warheads compared to India’s 60 to 80. China, in comparison, has around 240 warheads.
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said Pakistan’s weapons-grade plutonium production would jump seven-fold with the two new reactors at Khushab nearing completion.
“Our conservative estimates are that Pakistan has 60 warheads and could produce 100 nuclear weapons at short notice,” said SIPRI, adding that Islamabad had earmarked its US-supplied F-16 fighters, Ghaznavi and Shaheen missiles as its nuke delivery systems.
India’s nuclear weapons programme, in turn, has largely been plutonium-based, basically centred around the Pu-239 produced in research reactors like Cirus and Dhruva at Bhabha Atomic Research Centre.
Nuclear arsenals of India, Pakistan, and even China, pale in comparison to the gigantic ones of the two former Cold War foes, US and Russia. SIPRI estimates there are whopping 22,600 active, inactive and stored nuclear warheads around the globe, enough to destroy it several times over.
While Russia has 12,000 warheads, 4,630 of them “deployed” ones, US has 9,600, which includes 2,468 of them operational. The two have, however, recently decided to slash their inventories by nearly one-third.
France comes third with 300, followed by UK with 225. Israel, which like India and Pakistan is not a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, completes the list of the eight countries with nuclear weapons, with an arsenal of 80 warheads. Then, there is also North Korea, which has produced “enough plutonium for a small number of warheads”, SIPRI said.
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