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18th June 2024 (10 Topics)

SIPRI Yearbook 2024

Context

A recent report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has highlighted the status of global nuclear arsenals in 2024. The report sheds light on the nuclear capabilities of various nations, including India, Pakistan, and China.

Key Findings of SIPRI Yearbook 2024

  • Nuclear Arsenals: Russia and the US possess the majority of the world's nuclear weapons, accounting for 90% of the total.
    • China's nuclear arsenal has seen a significant increase, growing from 410 warheads in January 2023 to 500 in January 2024.
    • India possesses 172 "stored" nuclear warheads as of January 2024, slightly more than Pakistan.
  • Modernization: Nine nuclear-armed nations, including India, Pakistan, and China, are actively modernizing their nuclear arsenals. This includes developing new nuclear delivery systems.
  • Operational Alert: Around 2,100 nuclear warheads, primarily from the US and Russia, are kept in a state of high operational alert on ballistic missiles. China also reportedly placed some warheads on high alert for the first time.
  • World’s nuclear-armed states: United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and Israel.

India's Nuclear Development:

  • India adheres to a no-first-use (NFU) policy but retains the option of retaliating to non-nuclear threats.
  • Missile Capabilities: As of January 2024, India had approximately 80 operational missiles. New developments include:
    • Agni-P: Medium-range ballistic missile.
    • Agni-V: Intermediate-range ballistic missile, nearing deployment.
    • Agni-VI: Under design, with intercontinental range.
    • Shaurya: Land-based version of the K-15 submarine-launched ballistic missile in development.
  • Naval Component: India is building a nuclear triad with ballistic missile submarines (SSBNs):
    • INS Arihant: First deployed in 2018 for deterrence patrols.
    • INS Arighat: Launched in 2017, deployment expected in 2024.
    • Plans for additional Arihant-class submarines.

Fact Box: About SIPRI

  • Established in: 1966
  • Based in: Stockholm
  • SIPRI is an independent international institute dedicated to research into conflict, armaments, arms control and disarmament.
  • SIPRI Yearbook: The present release is the 55th edition of the SIPRI Yearbook.
    • It is a compendium of cutting-edge information and analysis on developments in armaments, disarmament and international security. 

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