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UK plans to increase nuclear stockpile in another U-Turn

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
UK Nuclear Submarine and missile composite. (Getty)

The British Prime Minister Boris Johnson unveiled the UK's plan to expand its nuclear warhead stockpile by at least forty percent.

He justified the move by claiming that it merely aims to ensure Britain's security in a more risky global environment, as it faces technological and doctrinal threats.

The decision would end Britain's gradual nuclear disarmament programme from 2010 under which London had committed to cutting its nuclear stockpile to 180 warheads by the mid 2020s.

On March 16 The British government released a long awaited Review of Defence, Security and Foreign Policy. A key piece of the documents centered on the strengthening of the UK nuclear deterrent.

The government, in another U Turn, now plans to increase the cap on the stockpile of nuclear warheads from 180 to 260.

The review also noted that Britain reserves the right to withdraw assurances that it will not use nuclear weapons against a non nuclear armed state.

The announcement prompted British campaigners to slam the UK government's plan to increase the country's nuclear weapons stockpile, which was described as a move that amounts to a violation of international law.

The planned increase also drew criticism from the Labour Party leader Keir Starmer, who accused the Tory government of having a global reputation for breaking international law.

Also, the Scottish National Party defense spokesperson, Stuart MacDonald, slammed the increase as nothing short of abhorrent.

The decision also prompted an international outcry; the Kremlin slammed the decision, saying that it harms international stability and strategic security.

Russia also stressed that the presence of nuclear warheads threatens global peace.

Well, there is no excuse, none whatsoever, for the UK to increase the threshold on its number of nuclear warheads and you know that there's no good reason, and no excuse for that because the government itself has not even tried to provide an explanation, a detailed explanation, for why this might be the case.

Tom Unterrainer, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, London

While Boris Johnson defends his government's plan to expand Britain's stockpile of nuclear warheads, he accuses Iran of attempting to acquire a nuclear weapon.

Following those remarks, Iran's Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, lambasted the UK's hypocritical behavior stressing that, unlike the UK and its allies, Iran believes nukes and all weapons of mass destruction are barbaric and must be eradicated.

Iran has time and again rejected as baseless the West claim that it is seeking a nuclear weapon, such allegations run counter to numerous reports by the International Atomic Energy Agency, showing the peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear programme.

The IAEA has carried out intense inspections of Iran's nuclear sites over the past several years.

Washington has repeatedly accused Iran of militarizing its peaceful nuclear programme and has even imposed illegal and inhumane sanctions against Tehran to hamper its nuclear development.

There is no accident here whatsoever. The fact of the matter is, is that the UK, claimed that its nuclear weapons system is an independent, sovereign, nuclear weapons system, when in fact it is wholly and entirely reliant on the United States of America.

That's the one element of the basic weapon system, which is not wholly reliant on which they claim is not wholly reliant on the United States is the nuclear warhead itself.

Tom Unterrainer, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, London

Both London and Washington are showing hypocritical behavior, regarding the nuclear programs.

While they are both developing this technology for military dominance, why won't they let other countries like Iran have it for peaceful purposes?


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