January 19, 2017 5:47:26 pm
Nearly two days after China had said that admission of non-NPT signatories in NSG cannot be a “farewell gift” for countries to give to each other, India on Thursday it’s not seeking NSG membership as a gift. Speaking to the media, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup clarified, “India is not seeking NSG membership as a gift. We are seeking it based on our non-proliferation record.”
“I, of course, cannot speak for other applicants,” he said in an obvious reference to Pakistan, with questionable
non-proliferation record, also making efforts to get into the NSG.
New Delhi’s comments come after China said they have made their position clear before and it won’t be some kind of a farewell gift for countries to give to each other.
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Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying had told a media, “Regarding India’s application to the NSG, regarding non-NPT countries admission to the NSG, we have made our position clear before so I will not repeat it. I just want to point out that NSG membership shall not be some kind of (a) farewell gift for countries to give to each other.”
Confirming that US President Obama had made a thank you call to PM Modi for his continued support, Swarup said, “Both leaders have shared a warm relationship.” He also added that India’s US Ambassador will be attending President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration and other official events.
When asked on reports of the British Parliament debating Jammu and Kashmir issue, Swarup said there’s no room for a third party role.
As per the new stand announced by Beijing, it first wants to find a solution that is applicable to the admission of all
non-NPT countries followed by discussions on admitting specific nations. Besides India, China is also interacting with Pakistan on the issue as Islamabad too applied for NSG membership after India.
Swarup again reiterated that there was no need for any country to be concerned after India’s test-firing of the
nuclear-capable Agni-V intercontinental ballistic missile last month. He also said the test-firing was done as per India’s defence requirement as nuclear doctrine which was defensive in nature.
(With PTI inputs)
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