Pakistan pushes for NSG membership at UN

Pakistan pushes for NSG membership at UN

Islamabad, Aug 25 (IANS) Pakistan has made a strong pitch for membership to the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), telling the UN Security Council that the “exemplary measures” Islam­­abad had taken to strengthen nuclear safety establish its eligibility credentials.

The NSG is a 48-nation body that regulates the global trade in nuclear technology.

“We expect that a non-discriminatory, criteria-based approach is followed for extending NSG membership which strengthens the non-proliferation regime,” Pakistan’s representative to the UN Maleeha Lodhi said, Dawn online reported on Thursday.

Speaking on non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, Lodhi said Pakistan had implemented a comprehensive export control regime, participated in the Nuclear Security Summit process, ratified the 2005 amendment to the Convention on Physical Protection of Nuclear Material.

She said Pakistan has also declared unilateral moratorium on further nuclear testing and reiterated its willingness to translate it into a bilateral arrangement on non-testing with India, all of which established its eligibility to become a NSG member.

A challenge to non-proliferation norms was the granting of “discriminatory waivers”, arrangements which denoted “double standards” and opened the possibility of diverting material intended for peaceful use to military purposes, she said, in an oblique reference to India.

India and Pakistan are the two non-NPT states aspiring for the membership of the 48-member international nuclear trade cartel. At least 10 countries, including China, had opposed India’s bid to join the NSG at its last meeting.

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