Adversarial peace

India–Pakistan nuclear rivalry

Authored by: Farah Jan

Pakistan at Seventy

Print publication date:  June  2019
Online publication date:  June  2019

Print ISBN: 9781857439847
eBook ISBN: 9780429426810
Adobe ISBN:


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The partition of British India in 1947 gave birth to one of the longest and most enduring rivalries in South Asia. The India–Pakistan rivalry has dominated regional politics for the last 70 years, resulting in four wars, multiple crises, and an arms race that nuclearized South Asia. As a result of the rivalry with India, Pakistan’s foreign policy from the very beginning has been shaped and guided by the threat from India. Furthermore, India’s conventional superiority along with the loss of East Pakistan in 1971 played a major role in Pakistan’s decision to acquire nuclear weapons. On 28 and 30 May 1998 Pakistan tested six nuclear devices in the mountains of Balochistan, thereby officially becoming a nuclear weapons state.

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