Pakistan has 130-140 nuclear warheads, state US scientists

IBTimes Staff Reporter
A group of American scientists have released a report on the nuclear facilitates in Pakistan.

According to Hans M Kristensen, the director of the Nuclear Information Project, and Robert Norris, of the Federation of American Scientists, Pakistan has "produced an estimated stockpile of 130-140 nuclear warheads for delivery by short- and medium-range ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and fighter-bombers."

In their report, the US scientists have outlined that Pakistan has around 10 facilities, including 5 missile garrisons (soon possibly 6) as well 2 (possibly 4) air bases with fighter-bombers. They also reiterate that the total number and location of Pakistan's nuclear-capable missile bases is yet unknown.

There are five primary nuclear-capable bases and a primary TEL (Transporter Erector Launcher) production facility in Pakistan, adds the report. Akro Garrison, Gujranwala Garrison, Khuzdar Garrison, Pano Aqil Garrison and Sargodha Garrison are nuclear-capable. National Development Complex (sometimes called National Defense Complex), or NDC has been idenitifed by them as the primary TEL (Transporter Erector Launcher) production facility.

Hans M. Kristensen said, "Pakistan has a large number of air bases but only a small number is thought to be involved in the nuclear mission. This includes bases with Mirage and F-16 fighter-bombers. United States officials have stated that F-16s were sold to Pakistan on the condition that they could not be used to deliver nuclear weapons, but other sources have indicated that some of the planes were converted nonetheless. French-produced Mirage aircraft are widely assumed to be equipped to deliver the Ra'ad air-launched cruise missile."

"We estimate that Pakistan currently has a stockpile of 130-140 nuclear warheads and is building more. But we also take note of statements by some Pakistan officials that the country might not intend to continue to increase its arsenal indefinitely, but may soon reach the goal for the size of its full-spectrum deterrent. Whether and when that will happen remains to be seen. For now the Pakistani arsenal is in a dynamic phase," adds the scientist.

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