Sunday, December 10, 2023

India’s bid for NSG membership now more ‘complicated’: China

By Gaurav Sharma
Beijing, June 5 (IANS)
China on Monday said India’s application to enter the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) has become more “complicated”, indicating that it won’t budge from its earlier position.

“About the Nuclear Suppliers Group, it is a new issue under new circumstances and it is more complicated than previously imagined,” China’s Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Li Huai said in an interaction with media.

He did not elaborate on what he meant by “complicated.”

“China supports the NSG to have a consultation to reach a non-discriminatory and universally applicable solution, applicable to all members of the NSG,” he said.

Last month, China had said its position on India’s membership to the NSG had not changed, indicating it will again block New Delhi’s plea at the plenary session in Bern next month.

At the NSG’s plenary session in Seoul in June 2016, China opposed India’s application. It again scuttled India’s bid in the November consultative group meeting.

The plenary meet of the 48-member elite grouping, which regulates global nuclear trade, is likely to take place at Bern in Switzerland this month.

India’s bid has been backed by the US and other members in the grouping, but China opposes its entry, citing its non-signatory status to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

Beijing argues that if India can be let in why not Pakistan, which is also not an NPT member.

India finds the NPT discriminatory in nature. The US, Switzerland, Mexico, Italy, Russia and Britain have backed New Delhi’s NSG bid.

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