NATO Considering Upping Number of Operational Nuclear Weapons

( – The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) said that it may increase the deployment of its nuclear-capable armaments as global tensions continue to soar.

Jens Stoltenberg, the organization’s secretary-general, said the consideration follows claims that China and Russia have expressed a strong willingness to use their nuclear weapons if they feel prompted to do so.

Stoltenberg refused to share details regarding operational procedures, the number of warheads that could be brought online, or which ones are to be stored. He said that further consultation will be needed first. He also said members of the alliance want to pull more weapons from storage and put them on standby.

Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, has already threatened to use nuclear weapons against nations helping Ukraine numerous times. The first of those claims came within hours of his nation’s attack against the European country. However, Putin also said more recently that his military is not out brandishing nuclear weapons at this time during a speech at the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg. He claimed the Russian military would only resort to nuclear attacks if outside forces threatened its government or territory, which he doesn’t currently believe to be the case.

Russia has already joined one of its closest allies, Belarus, in conducting tactical nuclear weapon drills. The partnership and provocative military activities have led to heavy sanctions from the European Union. They hope to close loopholes to sanctions already instituted against Russia.

Stoltenberg also addressed the growing threat posed by China and its expanding nuclear arsenal. Those concerns have been deepened since China and Russia began building relations between themselves and North Korea. He echoed a chilling warning issued by Putin at the beginning of his war with Ukraine when he said, “NATO may face something that it has never faced before.”

He’s also encouraging alliance members to maintain transparency about their nuclear capabilities to deter escalation.

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