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US State Department reveals number of nukes in stockpile for first time since 2017

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)
A deactivated US Titan II nuclear ballistic missile (Photo by AFP)

The US State Department has revealed the number of nuclear weapons in the country’s arsenal for the first time since 2018, when former US President Donald Trump decided to keep the figures secret.

In a recent statement, the State Department announced the number of US nuclear weapons, both active and inactive, at 3,750 as of September 2020.

"Increasing the transparency of states' nuclear stockpiles is important to nonproliferation and disarmament efforts," the State Department claimed.

This comes after a three-year hiatus, when the Trump administration released its stockpile number in March 2018. At that time, the US announced the total number of its weapons at 3,822 as of September 2017.

“Back to transparency,” claimed Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists.

The US and Russia are the world’s largest holders and developers of nuclear weapons, followed by Britain, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and the Israeli regime, which has not declared its possession of nuclear warheads, but does not deny having them. The regime does not allow any international inspection of its nuclear facilities either.

The United States has produced more than 70,000 nuclear warheads since 1945, more than all other nuclear-weapon states combined. The US government spent at least US$9.61 trillion in present-day terms on nuclear weapons, according to experts.

The United States was the first country to manufacture nuclear weapons and is the only country to have used them -- on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II. The two bombings killed up to 226,000 people, most of whom were civilians.

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