Updated 9:12 AM EST, Tue, Jan 05, 2021

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NSG' Plenary Meeting at Seoul Concludes, China Maintains Opposition to India's Membership Bid

Modi Xi

(Photo : Getty Images) Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday urged China's Xi Jingping to support India's NSG membership bid 'on its own merits.'

China on Friday continued its opposition to India' Nuclear Supplier Group (NSG) membership bid, insisting that Beijing would not support the membership of non-signatories of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

"If exceptions are allowed here or there on the question of NPT, the international non-proliferation order then will be collapsed altogether," Wang Qun, director-general of the Department of Arms Control of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said. "In the absence of NPT as the political and legal basis, how could the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsular be resolved? All these merit reflection. While it's easy to adopt double standards, the consequence can be enormous."

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Qun's remarks followed Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's meeting with China's Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Uzbekistan's capital Tashkent on Thursday. Modi, in the meeting, urged Xi to support India's NSG membership bid 'on its own merits.'

China, along with Brazil, Turkey, New Zealand, Austria, and Ireland, has opposed India's entry into the 48-member elite grouping on the ground that New Delhi is not a signatory of Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). The two-day plenary meeting of the Nuclear Supplier Group (NSG) was held in South Korean capital Seoul on Thursday and Friday.

tHE Indian government, however, remains optimistic about its NSG membership. India's Foreign Minister spokesperson Vikas Swarup said that an early decision on its membership is in the larger global interest.

"India believes that an early decision on its application remains in larger global interest. India's participation in the NSG will further strengthen nuclear non-proliferation and make global nuclear commerce more secure. It would advance energy security and make a difference to combating climate change. We are confident that the NSG will recognize these benefits as it deliberates further on this issue," Swarup said. 

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