Pakistan possesses enough materials to assemble a small number of nuclear weapons in a matter of hours or days. It possesses between 585-800 kg of highly-enriched uranium and may possess enough weapons-grade plutonium for the production of 3-5 weapons. Pakistan's nuclear weapons are reportedly stored in component form, meaning that the fissile core is stored separately from the non-nuclear explosives. Pakistan has not acceded to the NPT or the CTBT.
"If India builds the bomb, we will eat grass or leaves, even go hungry. But we will get one of our own." - Pakistani Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, 1965
Pakistan's quest for nuclear weapons has been motivated by fears of domination by India, whose population, economy, and military is much greater than its own. Since 1947, when Pakistan gained independence from Great Britain, it has been locked in conflict with India. Between that time and the present, Pakistan and India have fought 3 full-scale wars, 2 of which were fought over the hotly-debated territory of Kashmir. The last war in 1976 resulted in the partition of Pakistan into two nations, with the west side remaining Pakistan and the east side formed as Bangladesh. In April 1998, Abdul Qadeer Khan, self-proclaimed father of Pakistani nuclear weapons, stated that Pakistan was ready to test a nuclear weapon. In May of that same year, the Pakistani government gave permission for nuclear tests. On May 28, 2001, after the tests took place at Chagai Hill in west Pakistan, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif declared, "Today we have settled a score".
Pakistan has acquired nuclear-capable missiles with ranges between 280 km - 2,000 km. The bulk of its missile capabilities come from China and North Korea. Pakistan has also acquired F-16 aircraft from the US, which are capable of delivering nuclear weapons. There are two types of long-range ballistic missiles that Pakistan has developed. The Ghauri missile, developed by Khan Research Laboratories, is derived from North Korean technology and the Shaheen missile, developed by the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, is derived from Chinese technology. Competition between the Khan Research Laoratories and the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission has been a driving force in the development of Pakistan's missile technology. IAEA safeguards do not apply to Pakistan's research and development laboratories.
In May 1998, Pakistan conducted a series of nuclear tests. They claim that 5 tests were conducted on May 28. The tests produced only one seismic signal, indicating simultaneous detonations, which yielded a seismic equivalent of 6-13 kilotons of explosive power. On May 30, another series of nuclear tests were performed, yielding a seismic equivalent of 2-8 kilotons.
Pakistan has ratified the Biological and Toxic Weapons Convention in 1974 and participates in negotiations to establish an effective verification protocol for the treaty. In October 1997, Pakistan ratified the Chemical Weapons Convention and did not declare possession of any chemical weapons.