Washington: Just as signs are beginning to appear of a flare-up in US-China clashes, China is revealed to have initiated secret attempts at expanding its nuclear arsenal. The US news outlet ‘The Washington Post’ has claimed the US had provided details on it to its NATO allies last month. Besides, US agencies have warned that China had commenced the production of uranium and plutonium, which are required for producing nuclear weapons, in significant amounts. Currently, China has 200-300 weapons, but some analysts have demanded to take this number up to 1000.
Last month, in a briefing to NATO, the US agencies had presented satellite images of China’s secret projects. They include plants from Jiuquan, Mianyang and Leshan. The three plants are secretly operational in production of uranium and plutonium, required for the production of nuclear weapons. A report published in 2017 stated that China had stopped the production of uranium in 1987 and plutonium in 1991. Despite that, the US report allegation exposes the fact that China has secretly continued the production of uranium and plutonium. China has never revealed details on this project and also on the number of nuclear weapons it possessed, which is something the US official highlighted.
China has also significantly expanded its nuclear test site. In an earlier report, the US has stated China had secretly carried out nuclear tests at this site. Further, in a briefing to NATO, the US noted that a rise was observed in the Chinese military nuclear arsenal in the past decade.