Report: Israel stopped producing nukes in 2004

(JTA) — Israel stopped producing nuclear warheads nine years ago when it reached a stockpile of 80, according to a new report.

The September/October issue of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, released over the weekend, calculated that some 125,000 nuclear warheads have been built since 1945, about 97 percent of them by the United States and the Soviet Union and Russia.

The report by Hans M. Kristensen and Robert S. Norris states that Israel began producing nuclear warheads in 1967 and produced between two and three warheads each year through 2004, when it froze production.

Israel has neither confirmed nor denied that is possesses nuclear weapons.

Citing U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency data, the article says that Israel’s nuclear stockpile will “modestly increase” by 2020.

The article noted that there are rumors that Israel is equipping some of its submarines with nuclear-capable cruise missiles and that Israel is estimated to have produced fissile material sufficient for between 115 warheads and 190 warheads.