In news- The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) launched the findings of SIPRI Yearbook 2021.
About the yearbook, 2021-
- It assesses the current state of armaments, disarmament and international security.
- A key finding is that despite an overall decrease in the number of nuclear warheads in 2020, more have been deployed with operational forces.
- The nine nuclear-armed states are the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea).
- These states together possessed an estimated 13,080 nuclear weapons at the start of 2021.
- This marked a decrease from the 13,400 that SIPRI estimated these states possessed at the beginning of 2020.
- However, the estimated number of nuclear weapons currently deployed with operational forces increased to 3825, from 3720 last year.
- Russia and the USA together possess over 90 percent of global nuclear weapons.
- Russia increased its overall military nuclear stockpile by around 180 warheads, mainly due to deployment of more multi-warhead land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and sea-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs).
- Both countries’ deployed strategic nuclear forces remained within the limits set by the 2010 Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START treaty), although the treaty does not limit total nuclear warhead inventories.
- All the other seven nuclear-armed states are also either developing or deploying new weapon systems.
- The UK’s ‘Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy’ (published in early 2021), reversed a policy of reducing the country’s nuclear arsenal and raised its planned ceiling for nuclear weapons from 180 to 260.
- North Korea continues to enhance its military nuclear programme as a central element of its national security strategy.
- While it conducted no nuclear test explosions or long-range ballistic missile tests during 2020, it continued production of fissile material and development of short- and long-range ballistic missiles.
More information- Arms trade report – JournalsOfIndia