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Day-two for NSG membership exceptions continues in Seoul

News Agencies | Updated on: 24 June 2016, 10:24 IST

The meeting of the two-day 26th Plenary of the Nuclear Suppliers' Group (NSG) top body heads of delegation discussion, continued here on 24 June to discuss India's application for membership to the elite club.

The first-day meeting concluded yesterday evening with no consensus emerging on India's induction to the elite group so far.

Highly placed sources said that China is not the sole opponent to India's membership to the NSG, but Brazil, Austria, Ireland, Turkey and New Zealand too have opposed India's entry, citing it's not being a signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) for nuclear weapons and weapons technology.

Mexico, however, backed India's membership.

Sources further said the meet also did not discuss the induction of Pakistan into the elite group.

Meanwhile, on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Tashkent yesterday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to make a fair and objectives assessment of New Delhi's application to the NSG and to judge it on its own merit.

Briefing the media about the meeting, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup said Prime Minister Modi had asked China to contribute to the emerging consensus in the ongoing NSG plenary meeting in Seoul.

"In fact the rest of the meeting was devoted to this issue. Prime Minister Modi urged China to make a fair and objective assessment of India's application and judge it on its own merit," Swarup said.

"He (Prime Minister) said China should contribute to the emerging consensus in Seoul," Swarup quoted Prime Minister Modi as saying," he added.

Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar, on 22 June, left for Seoul to make a last minute push for New Delhi's entry into the elite group.

According to sources, this move is being seen as a final push on India's part to make its case. Jaishankar, who is not a part of the negotiations in the NSG's inner circle, will reportedly lobby for India's bid.

This comes days after Jaishankar made a two-day trip to China on 16 and 17 June to discuss the matter with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi.

China, till now, has been playing the role of a dampener on the issue of clearing the way for India's admission to the NSG by repeatedly stating that it is not on the agenda of the grouping, which began its plenary session in Seoul on 20 June.


First published: 24 June 2016, 10:24 IST