China nuke arsenal build-up ‘concern for global stability’: G7

SpaceWar.com reports: “China’s rapidly growing nuclear arsenal is a ‘concern to global and regional stability’, Group of Seven leaders said Friday after talks on nuclear disarmament in the Japanese city of Hiroshima.

The SIPRI think tank estimates that China has a stockpile of around 350 nuclear warheads — a small sum when compared with the United States and Russia.

But it is growing fast, and the country could have 1,500 warheads by 2035, according to a Pentagon estimate published in November.

Concerns about the build-up have been growing in the West, and the G7 leaders warned that expansion ‘without transparency nor meaningful dialogue poses a concern to global and regional stability’.

Since its first nuclear test in 1964, China has been content to maintain a comparatively modest arsenal and has maintained that it will never be the first to use nuclear weapons in a conflict.

But in recent years, under President Xi Jinping, it has begun a massive military modernisation drive that includes upgrading its nuclear weapons to not only deter foes but also be able to counter-attack if deterrence fails…”

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