China Urges US Reconsider Nuclear Stance Following Washington's Comments on Increasing Warheads

China has asked the United States to reconsider its nuclear stance and reduce its arsenal following comments from a senior U.S. official about potentially increasing warheads.

What Happened: Pranay Vaddi, senior director for arms control disarmament and non-proliferation at the National Security Council, warned that Russia, China, and North Korea are rapidly expanding their nuclear capabilities, South China Morning Post reported on Monday. He suggested the U.S. might need to increase its nuclear arsenal to counter these threats.

Vaddi stated at the Arms Control Association forum that an increase in nuclear weapons might be necessary to protect the U.S. and its allies if adversary arsenals continue to grow. This comment has sparked a response from China, emphasizing the need for the US to act responsibly.

China’s response, delivered via the Russian state news agency Tass, criticized the U.S. for maintaining a first-use nuclear policy and heavily investing in its nuclear triad. The Chinese government urged the U.S. to reduce the role of nuclear weapons in its security policies.

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According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, the U.S. has 3,708 nuclear warheads, while Russia has about 4,489. China has not disclosed its arsenal size, but Washington estimates it to be around 500 warheads.

China has declined to join three-way nuclear arms discussions with the U.S. and Russia but held talks with the U.S. last year to increase nuclear transparency and manage strategic risks. The Chinese embassy in Washington reiterated that China maintains its nuclear capabilities at the minimum level required for national security.

Why It Matters: The call from China comes amid escalating global tensions. Last month it was reported that the U.S. military is facing an escalating threat from China’s rapidly growing Rocket Force, which poses a significant risk to American bases and warships in the Pacific. The missiles, known as “carrier killers” and the “Guam Express,” could make a potential conflict in the region devastating for American forces.

Meanwhile, South Korea and the U.S. have initiated discussions in Seoul to strengthen their nuclear response strategies against potential threats from North Korea. The meeting, part of the Nuclear Consultative Group (NCG), is a continuation of last year's summit where the U.S. pledged to provide South Korea with greater insight into its nuclear planning against North Korean threats.

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Image via Shutterstock

This story was generated using Benzinga Neuro and edited by Pooja Rajkumari

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Posted In: NewsPoliticsGlobalGeneralChina-US relationsnuclear powerPooja RajkumariPranay VaddiXi Jinping
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