All five legally recognised nuclear states as defined by the non-proliferation treaty – China, France, Russia, the UK and US – are either deploying new nuclear weapons and delivery systems or plan to do so, according to a leading international research organization, The Guardian reported.
The countries "appear determined to retain their nuclear arsenals indefinitely", says the latest yearbook published by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri).
At the start of 2013, eight states – the US, Russia, UK, France, China, India, Pakistan and Israel – possessed approximately 4,400 operational nuclear weapons. Nearly 2,000 of these are kept in a state of high operational alert. If all nuclear warheads are counted, these states together possess a total of approximately 17,265 nuclear weapons, says the Sipri report.