13:20 GMT23 September 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - China is developing land, sea, and air-based nuclear weapons systems, the US Defence Department said in a report on Tuesday.

    "China is pursuing a 'nuclear triad' with the development of a nuclear-capable air-launched ballistic missile (ALBM) and improving its ground and sea-based nuclear capabilities", the report said.

    The report, an annual assessment submitted to Congress, also said Beijing is moving its strategic nuclear arsenal to a more rapid launch footing.

    "New developments in 2019 further suggest that China intends to increase the peacetime readiness of its nuclear forces by moving to a launch-on-warning (LOW) posture with an expanded silo-based force", the report read.

    China is expanding its inventory of the multi-role DF-26, a mobile, ground-launched intermediate-range ballistic missile system capable of rapidly swapping conventional and nuclear warheads, the Defence Department added.

    Tags:
    nuclear triad, US Defense Department, United States, China
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