Nuclear Arms Control Challenges in South Asia

  • Citation: Chakma, Bhumitra. “Nuclear Arms Control Challenges in South Asia.” India Review 9, no. 3 (2010): 364–84.
    • Topics:
    • Conflict and Security
    • Keywords:
    • arms control
    • South Asia's security dilemma
    • India-Pakistan
    • China

The idea of arms control has hardly taken root in South Asia. The existing nuclear arms control measures between India and Pakistan are patently inadequate for addressing the pressing nuclear concerns of the region. Although there are compelling reasons for nuclear arms control, India and Pakistan are reluctant to undertake worthwhile arms control initiatives. There are three key reasons for this: India and Pakistan are currently at the formative phase of their nuclear force-building and at this stage they are unlikely to undertake arms control measures fearing that it may affect their future force-building plans; their intense political rivalry is unfavorable for successful arms control; the extra-regional links—the China factor—of South Asia’s security dilemma hinders prospects for arms control in the region. Owing to these factors, the prospects for successful arms control between India and Pakistan are not great in the foreseeable future, although the question remains as to how long they can ignore the issue.

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