New Delhi, June 21: Ahead of the plenary meet of the 48-member of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) this week, India has amplified its diplomatic efforts for lobbying to get the membership of the elite club. India has intensified its efforts even after China signalled that there is no change in its stance on admission of non-NPT states into the NSG. The Ministry of External Affairs and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are meeting leaders of the key countries to get widen and strengthen support for India’s NSG membership.
In order to make India’s case stronger, MEA secretaries have been engaging with ambassadors of key countries like Brazil. New South Korean President Moon Jae-In sent his special envoy Dongchea Chung to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The meeting assumed significance as South Korea is the outgoing chair of NSG. Notably, the incoming chair of the NSG, Switzerland, has said it continues to support India’s candidature.
“We support India’s application for participation in the NSG and acknowledge India’s support to global nonproliferation efforts. We are of the view that it would contribute to strengthening global non-proliferation efforts if all countries having relevant nuclear technology and being suppliers of such technology were to become NSG members,” Pierre-Alain Eltschinger, spokesperson of the Swiss foreign ministry, was quoted as saying by Times of India.
Last month, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying made it clear that Beijing will oppose participation of the non-Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) members in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG). “China’s position on the non-NPT members’ participation in the NSG has not changed,” said Hua Chunying, indicating it will block New Delhi’s NSG bid again.
While the United States of America and other member countries of the NSG have been backing India, China has been opposing New Delhi’s application, citing its non-signatory status to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. In June 2016, Beijing opposed India’s application at the NSG’s plenary session in Seoul. It again scuttled India’s bid in the November consultative group meeting. The plenary meet is likely to take place at Bern in Switzerland in June.