India, China working with strategic maturity on NSG issue: MEA

New Delhi, [India], Sept 15 : Responding to China's statement in regard with its affirmation to the two step process for India's NSG membership bid, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday said New Delhi and Beijing are of the view that a process has been set in motion after the Seoul NSG plenary on the issue.

MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup while briefing the media said, "India and China's support to the process will demonstrate to the whole world that the two nations approach such issues with strategic maturity and are working together to narrow and resolve any difference of view." Swarup further said that India and China have had a substantive and pragmatic exchange on the issue of NSG membership, which is a priority for India because of the plans for civil nuclear energy.

"The exchange was useful in enhancing understanding of each other's perspective and will be continued.

The two sides were also of the view that a process has been set in motion after the Seoul NSG plenary on the issue of membership and they should support this process," he said.

Talking on issues such as development and clean energy, Swarup said, "There should not be any differences between our two sides.

The two sides are agreed that we should approach these issues with mutual sensitivity to each others' concerns and priorities." China earlier this week said that it supports the notion of a two-step approach within the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to address non- Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) states' participation, which includes India and Pakistan.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China in a statement said, "First stage means to explore and reach agreement on a non-discriminatory formula applicable to all the non-NPT states, and to proceed to take up country-specific membership issues at the second stage." The remarks were made during a meeting held earlier this week in New Delhi between Chinese delegation led by Director General Wang Qun of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Indian delegation led by Amandeep Singh Gill, Joint Secretary (Disarmament and International Security).

Beijing, during the meeting pointed out, that the issue of the non-NPT states' participation in the NSG raises new questions for the Group under the new circumstances, and the crux of the above question is how to address the gap between the existing policies and practices of the non-NPT states and the existing international non-proliferation rules and norms based on the NPT as the cornerstone, the statement said.

Source: ANI