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India is Confident of China’s Support for Nuclear Group Membership

China said, "large differences" remain over the issue of countries that have not signed the NPT joining the NSG

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Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj addresses a press conference in New Delhi, India, June 19, 2016. Image source: AP
  • New Delhi has overcome resistance from several countries such as Mexico and Switzerland
  • China is not opposing India’s entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group, but that it has raised objections relating to criteria and processes
  • With backup from US, India is lobbying hard before a key meeting in Seoul on June 23 to gain entry into the elite club

India is optimistic that China will not block its bid for membership of the Nuclear Supplier Group, the 48 countries controlling nuclear commerce and sensitive technology.  With the backing of the United States, India has been lobbying hard before a key meeting in Seoul on June 23 to gain entry into the elite club.

In recent weeks, New Delhi has overcome resistance from several countries such as Mexico and Switzerland, but Beijing is on the frontline of a tiny group of countries that continue to express reservations about opening the NSG’s doors to India because it has not signed the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Talking to reporters on Sunday, June 19, India’s foreign minister Sushma Swaraj appeared confident of overcoming Chinese resistance.  “We are hopeful that we will be successful in getting China’s support,” she said.

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Swaraj told reporters that China is not opposing India’s entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group, but that it has raised objections relating to criteria and processes.  “In India’s case, instead of criteria, its credentials should be taken into account,” she said.

Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi arrives for a bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (not pictured) at the Nuclear Security Summit, Friday, April 1, 2016, in Washington. Image source: Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press via AP
Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi arrives for a bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (not pictured) at the Nuclear Security Summit, Friday, April 1, 2016, in Washington. Image source: Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press via AP

India’s top diplomat conveyed that message to China during an unexpected visit Saturday, June 18, to woo Beijing.

China has said that “large differences” remain over the issue of countries that have not signed the NPT joining the NSG.

But an optimistic Swaraj expressed hope that “consensus is being built and maybe no country will break this consensus and we will get membership of NSG.”

Some controls

Although New Delhi has not signed the NPT, it has committed to some controls on its nuclear program under a 2008 deal with the United States. That deal effectively ended the isolation imposed on India since a 1998 nuclear test and gave it access to nuclear fuel and technology.

Analysts say, India’s dream of getting membership of the elite club is more about gaining a seat at the nuclear high table as it seeks to raise its global profile than any actual benefits.  They point out that New Delhi already has deals with more than eight countries either for supplies of uranium or for building power plants.

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Opponents say giving India membership will undermine efforts to prevent nuclear proliferation, which the NSG aims to do by restricting the sale of items that can be used to make arms.  It will also infuriate arch-rival Pakistan, which has also made a bid for membership of the NSG.

Asked whether China was linking India’s membership of the nuclear group with that of Pakistan, Swaraj said that each country’s membership should be decided on merit. (VOA)

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PM Modi inaugurates Ferry Service, Calls it his ‘Dream Project’

Calling it his dream project, PM Modi has called the service "a landmark occasion for entire South-East Asia".

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Wikimedia

Gujarat, October 22, 2017 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the first phase of the Ghogha-Dahej Ro-Ro ferry service, a first-of-its-kind project in India, calling it “a landmark occasion for entire South-East Asia”.

Describing it as his dream project, Modi said the ferry service was his “invaluable gift to India” and claimed that the even for South-East Asia, this was the first project of its size.

He said it were his efforts that gave birth to this ferry service which he had heard about only in his school days.

“It seems implementation of all good works are my luck,” Modi joked. “New changes don’t come from cliched attitude but new thinking. We changed the way of thinking,” he said.

He said the service would shorten a 360-km distance to 31 km or a journey of seven hours to one hour. (IANS)

 

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Asia Cup : India Emerge Champions for third time, Beat Malaysia in Asia Cup Hockey Championship

India emerged victorious for the third time

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(representational Image) India vs Malaysia Hockey Match wikimedia

Dhaka, October 22, 2017 : India overcame Malaysia 2-1 in the final on Sunday to win the Asia Cup hockey championship for the third time.

Ramandeep Singh (3rd minute) and Lalit Upadhyay (29th) scored for India. Shahril Saabah (50th minute) scored the reducer for Malaysia. (IANS)

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Myanmar Must Take Back Displaced Rohingya Refugees : India

Sushma Swaraj did not use the word Rohingya to refer to the thousands who have taken shelter in Bangladesh and instead referred to them as displaced persons from Rakhine state

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A group of Rohingya refugees walk on the muddy road after traveling over the Bangladesh-Myanmar border. VOA

Dhaka, October 22, 2017 : India on Sunday said Rohingya refugees who have poured into Bangladesh must be taken back by Myanmar from where they have been displaced.

“Normalcy will only be restored with the return of the displaced persons to Rakhine state,” Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said at a media meet also attended by her Bangladeshi counterpart Abula Hassan Mahmood Ali.

This followed the fourth India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Committee meeting.

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Sushma Swaraj did not use the word Rohingya to refer to the thousands who have taken shelter in Bangladesh and instead referred to them as displaced persons from Rakhine state, bdnews24.com reported.

She said India was “deeply concerned at the spate of violence in Rakhine state of Myanmar”.

According to latest figures from the UN office in Bangladesh, over 600,000 refugees have entered the country since August 25 after the Myanmar Army cracked down on the Rohingyas after a series of attacks on security personnel in Rakhine.

Bangladesh Minister Ali said India was urged to contribute towards exerting sustained pressure on Myanmar to find a peaceful solution to the crisis, including return of Rohingyas to their homeland. (IANS)