Oct 8, 2013, 6:58 PM
News Code: 80851531
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Turkey extends support for India's full membership in NSG

New Delhi, Oct 8, IRNA -- Turkey has assured India of backing its bid for full membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and would take up the issue with other members of the 47-nation grouping, President Pranab Mukherjee said today.

Returning from his two nation visit of Belgium and Turkey, Mukherjee, who had flagged the issue during his talks with leaders of both countries, told reporters on board, pti reported. "I briefed the Turkish leaders about India's efforts for full membership of the four export control regimes and stressed on our impeccable record on non-proliferation.

"We agreed that Turkey and India would continue consultations and discussions on these matters. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu conveyed to me that Turkey would be supportive of India but would need to work with other NSG members on this matter."

In the recent past, Turkey has made it clear that it does not object to India's quest for membership in the NSG but would like to see it joining the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), a prerequisite for being part of the NSG.

India while terming the NPT as discriminatory, has made it clear that as a responsible nuclear state, it scrupulously adheres to non-proliferation norms for which it deserves to be included as a member of the NSG and arms control regimes like MTCR, Wassenaar Arrangement and Australia Group.

In the first leg of his visit, the President had acknowledged Belgium's "upfront support" for creating an exception for India in NSG and had suggested that a clear public stand favouring India's effort for becoming permanent member of four Arms Control regimes "would be in line with our excellent cooperation" with Belgium.

The NSG has 47 members, MTCR has 34 countries as its members, Wassenaar Arrangement, an order which is for the promotion of regional security, international security and stability by offering transparency and greater responsibility in transfers of conventional arms, dual-use goods and technologies, has 41 members.

The Australia Group, an informal forum of countries which seeks to ensure that exports do not contribute to the development of chemical and biological weapons, has 42 members. Belgium is a member of all these groups.

Belgium and Turkey are members of all the groups.