ON November 11, a meeting of the NSG countries was arranged in Vienna. In this meeting China once again maintained its tough stand on the issue of new membership of the NSG and called for a two-step, non-discriminatory solution to admit non-NPT members into the 48-member elite grouping. The role of China for maintaining a balance of power particularly in the South-Asian region has ever been very positive.
China is doing all its best to crush the hegemonic designs of the stubborn countries like India. In other words China is playing the role of a moderator in the region. Some international forces might be afraid of China’s positive and balanced role in world politics but for those who desire to see the world a house of peace and prosperity; China is a ray of hope, trust and confidence. Nuclear Suppliers Group is a group of nuclear supplier countries that seek to prevent nuclear proliferation by controlling export of materials, equipment and technology that can be used to manufacture nuclear weapons. At present there are 48 member countries of NSG. Pakistan and India are not among list. With a very strong backing of US, India has been striving hard to become member of this group since long. It was first time in November 2010 when US President Obama announced US support for India’s participation in Nuclear Suppliers Group during his state visit to India.
Since then India and US are struggling hard to materialize the dream of making India the member of NSG. The Indian Express reported that among those who opposed Indian bid the main six countries were China, Brazil, Austria, New Zealand, Ireland and Turkey. As far as China is concerned, it has always maintained its stand that India’s bid will only be considered if rules for entry of non-NPT countries are finalized by the elite group. Mr.Lu Kang, spokesman of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said talking to media, “Our position is subject to no change as of date.” According to various media reports, China’s harsh reaction came just a few days after India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and his Chinese counterpart, Yang Jiechi, failed to reach a consensus on the issue. China has also made a case for Pakistan’s inclusion in the group if the NSG decides to grant an exception to India for its non-NPT status. As far as Pakistan is concerned, it fulfills all criteria for the NSG membership except for NPT requirement, which India, too, does not meet.
Pakistan wants simultaneous entry into the group with other non-NPT states that aspire to participate in the group. Pakistan is of the opinion that there must be no specific exemption or relaxation of rules for any country; all applications submitted by the non-NPT states for the membership of NSG must be measured up with the same yard-stick.
A non-discriminatory approach towards the NSG expansion would not only ensure strategic stability in South Asia, but would also serve the cause of international non-proliferation efforts. One thing more is very important that the rules and regulations for joining the NSG are devised for keeping this world safe from every type of nuclear terrorism. Special favours to India in this particular context would simply damage the international efforts against terrorism as India has ever been involved in all type of terrorist activities in the region. From the Indian Held Kashmir to Pakistan and from Sri Lanka to China, the stories of Indian involvement in terrorist activities are not hidden from anyone.
By blessing India with the membership of NSG would be an injustice to all those who have been facing the brunt of Indian terrorism since long. And this situation must be an eye-opener to Japan also who has recently decided to provide civil nuclear technology to India. By providing civil nuclear technology to India, Japan will promote an imbalance of power in the region. Japan’s kindness would have been a true blessing for the region if Pakistan were also among the beneficiaries of this civil nuclear technology. Even in Japan, critics are raising concerns about a risk of their country’s technology being diverted to India’s nuclear weapons programme. The people of Japan had been the ever worst victim to the nuclear violence and they are not in favour of diverting this technology to an irresponsible country like India.
—The writer is freelance columnist based in Multan.