March 27th, 2012
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India expresses interest for membership in exclusive N- clubs

seoul-summitSeoul: India has made a bid for membership in four exclusive nuclear clubs. According to India the membership would help strengthen its export control systems and maintain highest international standards of its nuclear programme. India is keen for membership of the NSG, MTCR, Wassenaar Arrangement and the Australia Group.

While addressing the second Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul Manmohan Singh said,”India has never been a source of proliferation of sensitive technologies and we are determined to further strengthen our export control systems to keep them on par with the highest international standards.”

“As a likeminded country with the ability and willingness to promote global non-proliferation objectives, we believe that the next logical step is India’s membership of the four export control regimes,” Singh said.

He laid emphasis on the fact that India had already adhered to the guidelines of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). Mr Singh also highlighted the need for all nuclear powered states to agree upon a multilateral framework to attain the goal of a nuclear weapons free world.

“This should include measures to reduce nuclear dangers by reducing the salience of nuclear weapons in security doctrines and by increasing universal restraints on the first use of nuclear weapons,” he said.

The Prime Minister pointed out that India is determined to further strengthen export control systems to keep them on par with the highest international standards. He said India supported early commencement of negotiations on a Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty at the Conference of Disarmament in Geneva.

Dr Singh said India has undertaken comprehensive reviews of nuclear safety measures at its nuclear facilities. Operational Safety Review teams of the IAEA has been invited to assist in its own safety reviews and audit. The country is also in the process of setting up a statutory, independent and autonomous Nuclear Safety Regulatory Authority.

The Prime Minister also announced a contribution of one million dollars to the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Nuclear Security Fund for the years 2012-13. He said India was also expanding its technical assistance to developing countries, including providing “our indigenously developed Cobalt tele-therapy machines — Bhabhatrons — for cancer treatment”.

The tele-therapy machines have been donated to Vietnam in 2008 and agreements have been signed with Sri Lanka and Namibia for its supply which are a step towards affordable treatment of cancer.



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