Which Countries have Nuclear Weapons?

Nuclear Weapons Countries

Nuclear weapons are the most destructive kind of arms that a mankind has ever made, but with the world getting dangerous day by day it is important for a country to have one. Nations that possess this king of authority create more peace and acts as a source from prevention of wars as with the fact that no nation wants to provoke the country with such energy. Talking about countries that currently have power with them, as of today there are nine of them that are strong in terms of such nukes, let’s see which one are they.

List of Countries having Nuclear Weapons

1.     North Korea

North Korea officially became the nation possessing such authority in 2006 with the fact that it is one of those nations which have been at odds with the treaties signed by the United Nations related to this proliferation.  North Korea has conducted several tests with their bombs, however, in order to launch an attack on its neighboring countries, it needs to make its warheads size smaller enough to fit into a missile.

2.     India

India is one of the most developing nations when it comes to power. The growing economy and military of India is claimed to be one of the largest in the world. The recent study says that the country has about 110 weapons and still has sufficient materials to produce about 356 and 492 atomic bombs. No wonder it is one of the countries that possess weaponries of mass destruction.

3.     Russia

The exact number of any nations atomic power and materials is difficult to figure out as it is a states secret, however, Russia being one of the top nuclear weapon countries, it can be said by the Federation of American Scientists that the country approximates possesses around 4500 weapons. According to Russian military authorities and the doctrine that was stated in 2010, the purpose of using these is for mass destruction against its allies.

4.     United States

The importance of such armaments when it comes to United States can be identified by the fact that it was the first country to manufacture them. Their power consists of chemical, nuclear and biological weapons. United States is that only country which has used its atomic bombs in war when it exploded 2 atomic bombs in Nagasaki and Hiroshima in World War II.

5.     France

France is one of the top 5 countries that own such weapons.  What makes it among those top 5 nations is that the atomic research of France began well before the time of World War II and between these two wars, the research was already on its advance stage. According to one of the French Presidents, the use of France’s atomic power would be against a state that attacks the country by terrorism.

6.     China

In 1949, after winning the civil war, the new Chinese leadership of communists viewed USA as a threat and later on with a series of confrontations and conflicts that began with the Korean War, Chinese leadership decided to get their own such resource.  Among the five states that hold such power, China is that country that possesses the second smallest power according to the Treaty on the Non – Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

7.     Pakistan

The start of Pakistan’s road to becoming nuclear country began from the time when it took advantage of the Atoms for Peace Program where it sent several students for the training in the said technologies in abroad. The research factor was, however, minimal but it changed as the states quest for seeking atomic power was in direct response to its defeat in 1971 by India that resulted in separation of East and West Pakistan. Doctor Abdul Qadeer Khan was the key figure in making Pakistan among those countries that possess such thing.

8.     Israel

Although Israel has never acknowledged to the fact, it is one of the sixth countries in the world to obtain this power. Officially, it has still not confirmed neither denied that it possesses any such powers. Although, no official statistics occur presently, it can be estimated that Israel holds weapons in the range of 75 to 400. It is also reported to have a wide range of different systems of nuclear weapons such as tactical arms, neutron bombs and suitcase nukes.

9.     United Kingdom

The United Kingdom was the third one to become the nuclear state and is one of the top 5 countries in the world holding such power. Their atomic armaments are developed and designed by the Atomic Weapons Establishment. Like the United States of America, the United Kingdom also started the nuclear weapon project informally among university physicists. The formal decision to make them was done after the war in 1947 (Britannica).


Like Israel, Iran is also one of the countries that still hasn’t denied or accepted whether they possess any atomic weapons or not but only nuclear energy plants. Currently, Iran is one of those countries which have failed to experiment the ballistic missiles due to which they are put under a notice by the United Nations Security Council and the IAEA (CNN, 2017).


Countries Total Known
Nuclear Weapons
First Test
North Korea October 2006
India 110 – 120 May 1974
Russia 7300 August 1949
United States 6970 July 1945
France 300 February 1960
China 260 October 1964
Pakistan 110 – 130 May 1988
Israel 80
United Kingdom 215 October 1952
Iran May 2009

With all that being said about the different countries holding the nuclear power, it is also true that the states that possess nuclear weapons are the most powerful of them which have a capability to destroy a city into the ground. Countries hold such power in order to maintain strategic preventive in terms of war and terrorism. In lay man terms, one can say that a country that possesses such power creates more peace as there are fewer chances of wars to occur as no nation wants to get aggravate any country.

Other interesting: