India is ready for NSG membership asserts US

nuclearAmid China and Pakistan’s opposition to India’s bid to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the US has backed New Delhi’s entry into the group. US State Department spokesman John Kirby on Friday quoted US President Barack Obama as saying during his visit to India in 2015 that “India meets missile technology control regime requirements and is ready for NSG membership”.

To reports that China has blocked India’s membership to the group, Kirby said the US was committed to help India become a member of NSG. On Pakistan and China’s position on India’s membership to the suppliers group, Kirby referred the mediapersons to the governments of the respective country.

“I’m going to refer you to the governments of China and Pakistan with respect to their positions on India’s membership,” Kirby said.

China and Pakistan are closely coordinating their strategy against India’s admission into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), Sputnik News said quoting US sources who work with the group.

The sources pointed to the fact that when India requested a session with the NSG participating governments at the recent NSG Consultative Group meeting on April 25 and 26, where it would have made a formal presentation in support of its membership, Pakistan also sought a similar opportunity.

Though aware that its request would not be accepted, Pakistan made it in order for China to look “neutral” and reject both applications on grounds of parity, it said.

Sources from the US expressed their disappointment with China’s tactics of “using Pakistan’s non credentials with the NSG to settle scores with India.” The “either both or none” strategy is not a secret; it was coordinated during the visit of Pakistan’s President Mamnoon Hussain to China in November 2015.

Sputnik News quoted sources as saying that the Chinese government told President Hussain that if India is allowed into the NSG, China would ensure that Pakistan also gets its membership in the group. However, “if India is allowed to join the NSG and Pakistan is deprived of NSG membership, Beijing will veto the move and block the Indian entry.”

“India’s non-proliferation credentials are not comparable with Pakistan’s, as Pakistan has a history of “selling nuclear technology to rogue states like Libya,” the sources noted. –  IANS

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