Britain`s N-weapons stockpile not to exceed 225 warheads

UK`s new coalition govt revealed that its nuclear weapons stockpile will not exceed 225 warheads.

Last Updated: May 26, 2010, 20:29 PM IST

London: Britain`s new coalition
government for the first time revealed Wednesday that the
country`s nuclear weapons stockpile will not exceed 225
warheads as the maximum number of operationally available
warheads remained at 160.

Foreign secretary William Hague today told parliament
that Britain`s nuclear weapons stockpile will not exceed 225
warheads.

Speaking in the House of Commons, he said the maximum
number of operationally available warheads in the UK stockpile
remained at 160.

It is for the first time that the government has
revealed the full size of the UK?s atomic arsenal, spelling
out the number of operational and non-operational warheads the
country possesses.

Until now, the British government has only revealed
that it possesses 160 operational nuclear warheads.

Hague told lawmakers that the time was right to be
"more open" about the overall number of warheads held in the
nuclear arsenal. He said the move was a "significant step".

The announcement comes as a UN nuclear
non-proliferation review conference in New York is due to
close on Friday.

We judge that this will assist in building a climate
of trust between nuclear and non-nuclear weapons states and
contribute therefore to future efforts to reduce the number of
nuclear weapons worldwide," Hague said.

The United States and France have made similar
announcements of their total stockpile numbers.

In March, the US revealed it has a stockpile of
5,113 nuclear warheads and "several thousand" more retired
warheads that await dismantling in a move intended to
encourage other countries to adopt non-proliferation rules.

PTI