UK supports India’s NSG membership bid unconditionallySep 29,2018 SOURCE: Times Now Digital
The United Kingdom (UK) said India has done enough to get an entry into the elite Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) membership, which is accountable for the international commerce of nuclear and backed India’s membership unconditionally. The diplomatic sources told the Times of India that London sees New Delhi as a significant member and defender of the international order.
A dialogue took place between India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office. India, despite opposition from China, is again pushing for the membership bid as the US also wants New Delhi to secure a membership following the 2+2 dialogue. And this support could be seen after India got the licence exception for a trade of defence and high-tech weaponry.
A source said after the meeting, “India has the right credentials for NSG membership and we believe it should be a member. Only the Chinese can explain what objections they have to India’s membership.”
China had vetoed India’s bid saying that any new member should sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). New Delhi is not a signatory to the NPT. Principal deputy assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asia Alice Wells had earlier said, “NSG is a consensus-based organisation. India has not been able to secure membership as a result of opposition from China.”
During the talks, India has also expressed concern of proliferation connections between Pakistan and North Korea. The UK assured India that Pakistan’s behaviour on the issue is not a matter of concern.
“The (AQ) Khan network was a terrible thing to have happened, but at the moment, we don’t believe Pakistan is being difficult as far as international attempts to address the issue of North Korea nuclear programme issue are concerned,” said the source, as per TOI.