Countering the Threat of Nuclear Terrorism Arising from Malicious Insiders

Swini Adikari

Citation: Swini Adikari, Countering the Threat of Nuclear Terrorism Arising from Malicious Insiders, Global Affairs Review, Vol. 2, No. 1, Spring/Summer 2021.

doi: 10.51330/gar.0020214

ISSN: 2660-6968

date: June 15th, 2021


Nuclear theft from malicious insiders is a significant threat to Pakistan’s nuclear weapons arsenal. Pakistan is a member of the Convention of the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM), which is an international agreement that adheres to the protection of nuclear materials and the recovery of stolen nuclear materials. However, this agreement does not specifically take into account the risk of security breaches arising from malicious insiders due to Pakistan’s rapidly growing nuclear arsenal. The purpose of this paper is to examine the heightened risk of insider threats in conjunction with Pakistan’s increasing nuclear force structure. The first section of the paper examines the history of the development of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons programme and discusses Pakistan’s current nuclear force structure. The second section examines the international and domestic policies that Pakistan follows to address the issue of insider threats to Pakistan’s nuclear facilities. The final section proposes two policy alternatives to address Pakistan’s growing insider threat risks and outlines how the Design Basis Threat assessment is the most effective solution for Pakistan’s growing insider threat.