World Neighbours 21 Jul 2016 ‘No country ca ...

‘No country can put itself opposite NPT,’ China on India’s NSG bid

Published Jul 21, 2016, 8:38 pm IST
Updated Jul 21, 2016, 8:38 pm IST
External Affairs Minister Smt Sushma Swaraj with Chinese Foreign Minister Mr Wang Yi. (Photo: Twitter)
 External Affairs Minister Smt Sushma Swaraj with Chinese Foreign Minister Mr Wang Yi. (Photo: Twitter)

Beijing: Amid India's assertion that it will not sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to gain entry into NSG, an adamant China on Thursday said "no country should or can put itself opposite the NPT".

"We have repeatedly stated our position on the accession of non-NPT countries into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)," Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Lu Kang said here, reacting to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj's statement in the Lok Sabha yesterday that India will not sign the NPT.

Read: India's bid is still under consideration of NSG: Centre

"It is worth mentioning that China does not make the rules for how to become new members of the group. The international community has forged a consensus long ago that the NPT is the cornerstone of the international non-proliferation regime. No country should or can put itself opposite to the NPT," Lu said.

Swaraj had said India is engaging with China to iron out differences after Beijing created "procedural hurdles" for its entry into the 48-member NSG but made it clear that government will never ink NPT, which only recognises five countries -- the US, Russia, the UK, France and China -- as nuclear weapon states.

Swaraj said China had raised questions over how a non-NPT signatory could become a member of the NSG.

"But we are engaging with it. We have not stopped efforts. If someone says 'No' for once, it does not mean he won't agree at all," she said.

Read: Didn’t create hype over NSG issue, govt is engaging with China: Sushma

Lu's comments today stated that there is no change in China's stand on the NPT and that the new members wanting to join the NSG should sign it.

Beijing in the past has insisted on consensus over the entry of new members into grouping after majority of the nuclear trading club backed India's case.

In a setback to India's efforts to join the grouping, the NSG plenary held in South Korea last month decided against accepting the country's membership application after China and some other nations opposed entry of a non-NPT signatory.



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