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Pakistan has more nukes than India: Report

November 18, 2009

WASHINGTON – A new report has revealed that Pakistan enjoys a substantial lead over India when it comes to nuclear weapons.

According to the report compiled by Robert S Norris and Hans M Kristensen in the latest edition of the Bulletin of the Atomic Science, Pakistan is estimated to possess 70 to 90 nuclear arsenals, way ahead of what India boasts.

India is said to have about 60 to 80 nuclear weapons currently, the report said.

The report also said that all the major Asian powers India, China and Pakistan were ‘quantitatively’ and ‘qualitatively’ adding on to their nuclear stockpile, however, it said it was tough to identify the locations of the deployment of the those nukes.

“Beijing, Islamabad and New Delhi are quantitatively and qualitatively increasing their arsenals and deploying weapons at more sites, yet the locations are difficult to pinpoint,” the report said.

“Whereas many of the Chinese bases are known, this is not the case in Pakistan and India, where we have found no credible information that identifies permanent nuclear weapons storage locations,” it said.

The two nuclear experts highlighted that it is believed that Pakistan’s nuclear weapons were not fully operational in normal circumstances, but India is thought to store its warheads in central storage locations rather than on bases with operational forces.

The report comes months after the US raised alarms over Pakistan’s expansion of its nuclear capabilities.

US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen, in a confidential briefing, had told members of Congress that there are certain reports which confirms that Islamabad is rapidly adding to its nuclear arsenal.

When inquired whether he had seen evidence of an increase in the size of the Pakistani nuclear arsenal, Admiral Mullen just said: “Yes”.

This certainly raises questions over the proposed billions of dollars of US military assistance to Pakistan that might be sidetracked to expand its nuclear capability rather than utilizing it to counter insurgency.

Officials of the Obama administration have said that they had communicated to Congress that their intent was to assure that military aid to Pakistan was directed toward counterterrorism and not diverted. (ANI)

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