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SIPRI: NUCLEAR WEAPONS – Role of nuclear weapons grows as geopolitical relations deteriorate

Monday 17 June 2024

SIPRI: NUCLEAR WEAPONS – Role of nuclear weapons grows as geopolitical relations deteriorate
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Progress on Basic Energy Access Reverses for First Time in a Decade 

(Stockholm, 17 June 2024) The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) today launches its annual assessment of the state of armaments, disarmament and international security. Key findings of SIPRI Yearbook 2024 are that the number and types of nuclear weapons in development have increased as states deepen their reliance on nuclear deterrence.

Nuclear arsenals being strengthened around the world

The nine nuclear-armed states—the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and Israel—continued to modernize 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 9585 were in military stockpiles for potential use (see the table below). An estimated 3904 of those warheads were deployed with missiles and aircraft—60 more than in January 2023—and the rest were in central storage. Around 2100 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 USA, but for the first time China is believed to have some warheads on high operational alert. 

‘While the global total of nuclear warheads continues to fall as cold war-era weapons are gradually dismantled, regrettably we continue to see year-on-year increases in the number of operational nuclear warheads,’ said SIPRI Director Dan Smith. ‘This trend seems likely to continue and probably accelerate in the coming years and is extremely concerning.’  Learn More/…

About SIPRI 

SIPRI is an independent international institute dedicated to research into conflict, armaments, arms control and disarmament. Established in 1966, SIPRI provides data, analysis and recommendations, based on open sources, to policymakers, researchers, media and the interested public. Based in Stockholm, SIPRI is regularly ranked among the most respected think tanks worldwide. Learn More/...

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Image Credit: AlexanderANTROPOV/Pixabay
Image Credit: AlexanderANTROPOV/Pixabay
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