Home / News / World /  Imran Khan says Pakistan will not be the first to use nuclear weapons ever

NEW DELHI : Pakistan will not be the first to use nuclear weapons ever, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan was quoted as saying by Reuters news agency on Monday amid tensions with New Delhi over the revoking of special status to Kashmir last month.

"We both are nuclear-armed countries. If these tensions increase, the world could be in danger," Khan said addressing members of the Sikh religious community in eastern city of Lahore. "There will be no first from our side ever," he was quoted as saying. It was not immediately clear if the Pakistan army – which is seen as key to making policy towards India, Afghanistan and the US – was on board with this statement. The Pakistan army views India as Pakistan’s key threat and has developed several India specific missiles and tactical nuclear war heads.

Khan’s comments come a week after Indian defence minister Rajnath Singh said India could re-look at its nuclear no first use policy. They also follow days of Khan himself warning the world of the threat of a nuclear conflict hanging over the sub continent after tensions rose with India redesignating Kashmir and Ladakh as union territories and revoking the special status for Kashmir – effectively rewriting the terms of engagement with Islamabad on Kashmir.

The Indian foreign ministry in New Delhi did not immediately comment on Khan’s statement.

India and Pakistan both came out of the nuclear closet in 1998. In its nuclear doctrine unveiled after the tests, India had said it would not be the first to launch a nuclear strike though it retained the right to launch a debilitating response to an attack. Pakistan on its part never made any such commitment and has always cited India’s conventional military superiority as a reason for its going nuclear.

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