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Nuclear powers spent $91.4 billion on arsenal modernization in 2023 - ICAN

Nuclear powers spent $91.4 billion on arsenal modernization in 2023 - ICAN Illustrative photo (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

Nine nuclear-armed states around the world continue to modernize their nuclear weapons. In 2023, they collectively spent a total of $91.4 billion on their arsenals, citing AP.

According to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) based in Geneva, the figures indicate a $10.7 billion increase in global nuclear weapons spending in 2023 compared to 2022. Notably, 80% of this increase comes from the United States.

The United States' share of the total spending amounted to $51.5 billion, which is more than all other nuclear-armed countries combined.

"There has been a notable upward trend in the amount of money devoted to developing these most inhumane and destructive of weapons over the past five years," said Alicia Sanders-Zakre, ICAN's Policy and Research Coordinator.

China follows with $11.8 billion in spending, and Russia ranks third with $8.3 billion.

High alert state

According to estimates by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), around 2,100 deployed warheads on ballistic missiles are in a state of high operational readiness, and nearly all of them belong to Russia or the United States. However, it is believed that China has also placed some warheads on high alert for the first time.

SIPRI data indicates that Russia and the United States together possess nearly 90% of all nuclear weapons. Their military stockpile sizes appear to have remained relatively stable in 2023. However, it is estimated that Russia deployed approximately 36 more operational warheads than in January 2023, SIPRI added.

"We have not seen nuclear weapons playing such a prominent role in international relations since the Cold War," said Wilfred Wan, Director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute's Weapons of Mass Destruction Program.

In early February, China urged the states with the largest nuclear arsenals to agree on a "no-first-use" agreement against each other.

At the same time, it became known that Russia plans to deploy nuclear weapons in space. It should be noted that the White House has repeatedly attempted to dissuade Russia from such actions.

Today, we reported that the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, Oleksandr Lytvynenko, said that dictator Putin may order the use of tactical nuclear weapons if the Russian army faces defeat in Ukraine.