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Chi hardens stand against India’s NSG membership bid

BEIJING, June 14: Even as New Delhi sought to downplay Chinese opposition to India’s bid to enter the 48-tion Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), Beijing hardened its position today with its official media saying that it would “jeopardise” Chi’s tiol interests besides touching a “raw nerve” in Islamabad.

Coming out openly in support of Pakistan on Tuesday, the state-run Global Times said India’s bid for NSG membership will worsen the security situation in South Asia.

“Chi’s concern about India’s inclusion into the NSG comes out of the security dymic in South Asia,” said the Chinese daily in a commentary.

“India’s application for NSG membership and its potential consequences will inevitably touch a raw nerve in Pakistan, its traditiol rival in the region,” it said.

“As Pakistan is not willing to see an enlarging gap in nuclear power with India, a nuclear race is a likely outcome. This will not only paralyze regiol security, but also jeopardize Chi’s tiol interests.”

In the commentary titled “India must not let nuclear ambitions blind itself”, the daily said that nuclear powered India and Pakistan keep alert to each other’s nuclear capabilities.

“A peaceful regiol and global environment is in the interests of all stakeholders. Chi’s concern about India’s inclusion into the NSG comes out of the security dymic in South Asia.

“Only when New Delhi and Islamabad take another step forward in their non-proliferation commitments can the region avoid being dragged into a nuclear confrontation,” it said.

Chi has emerged as the major stumbling block to India’s membership of the NSG.

The plery meeting of the NSG is expected to be held in Seoul on June 24.

The Global Times said the US and some NSG members had given a push to India’s membership bid, “but the reported opposition from most countries, especially Chi, seems to have irritated India.

“Beijing insists that a prerequisite of New Delhi’s entry is that it must be a sigtory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, while India is not.

“Despite acknowledging this legal and systematic requirement, the Indian media called Chi’s stance ‘obstructionist’.”

The daily said India had its own calculations for joining the NSG. And the US was backing New Delhi to sell it nuclear technology and to “enhance India’s deterrence capability is to put Chi in check”.

“What is missing in US and Indian motives are concerns for regiol security. So far, South Asia is still facing the harsh reality that the region is mired in nuclear confrontation,” said the commentary. (IANS)

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Ankur Kalita