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Pak only nation opposed to India’s NSG membership: Zamir Akram

Pak only nation opposed to India’s NSG membership: Zamir Akram
A man adjusts a Pakistani flag on a building ahead of National Independence Day in Lahore, Pakistan, August 12, 2015. Pakistan commemorates its Independence Day on August 14. REUTERS/Mohsin Raza

Islamabad: Pakistan’s former Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva Zamir Akram has said that Islamabad is the only country opposed to giving ‘exclusive membership’ to India in the 48-member Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).

Akram’s comments are a follow-up to what Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said that India does not object to any country, including Pakistan, joining the NSG on merit.

“Pakistan supports the evolution of criteria that can be applied across the board,” the Dawn quoted Akram, as saying.

The ex-diplomat was speaking at a roundtable discussion organised by the Stra­tegic Vision Institute (SVI), a think tank, on the implications of the upcoming plenary session of the NSG.

The NSG plenary session is scheduled to be held on June 23-24 in Seoul.

While New Delhi seeks a merit-based approach, Islamabad reportedly has been insisting on uniform and transparent criteria for non-NPT states.

Akram also warned about the likely implications of a scenario if India alone was admitted into the NSG.

His warning included dimming of future prospects for Islamabad’s entry into the club and likely growth in Indian nuclear arsenal.

He was of the observation that India was one of the worst proliferators.

Akram recalled that New Delhi once had scornful disdain for non-proliferation regimes, which has now been conveniently forgotten by the world.

India and Pakistan are both non-signatories of Non-Proliferation Treaty and are striving to make into the Nuclear Suppliers Group.

While India is being backed by many countries including the United States, Pakistan is being backed by China to make in into the 48-member nuclear trade cartel.

At a meeting of the group in Vienna on June 9, some other countries, including a few of those which had earlier pledged support for Indian case, voiced reservations over Indian candidature. (ANI)