US urges nuclear weapons States to exercise restraint: WH

Washington: The US has urged nuclear weapons States to exercise restraint regarding the use and testing of their nuclear capabilities, a top American official has said while responding to Pakistan’s test-firing of its first nuclear-capable submarine cruise missile.

“We have seen reports of this missile launch – submarine-launched missile,” State Department Spokesman John Kirby told reporters in response to a question on Pakistan.

“We continue to urge all states with nuclear weapons to exercise restraint regarding nuclear and missile capability testing and use, and we encourage efforts to promote confidence building and stability with respect to those capabilities,” Kirby said yesterday.

Pakistan yesterday successfully test-fired its first Submarine-Launched Cruise Missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead up to 450 kms, with the military saying the strategic weapon has given the country a “credible” second-strike capability and augmenting deterrence amidst tensions with India.

The Babur-3 missile was fired from an underwater, mobile platform from an undisclosed location in the Indian Ocean and hit its target with precise accuracy, the Inter Services Public Relations, the media wing of the Pakistani military said in a statement.

“The successful test of Babur-3 is a manifestation of Pakistan’s technological progress and self-reliance,” Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said in a statement.