India closely watching Pakistan-China reactor proposal

New Delhi, June 25 (IANS) India is closely watching the stand the 45-member Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) intends to take on China’s proposal to supply two more rectors to Pakistan.

‘At the moment, the position is clear. No NSG member can sell reactors to any country that is not a signatory to the NPT (Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty),’ said an top official well versed with India’s stand on strategic affairs.

‘India is the only exception. But we can only watch and observe what they (NSG) do. We are not a part of NSG.’

Yet, the official added, the stand that the 45-member club will take will be keenly watched, as it could have other strategic ramifications.

The matter, accordingly, could come up during the bilateral meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Canadian counterpart Stephen Harper after the G-20 meeting in Toronto Sunday, officials said.

India and Canada are set to conclude a far-reaching civilian nuclear deal, on the lines New Delhi has with Washington, during the bilateral meeting between the two leaders.

The official was reacting to what possible position India intended to take on the proposal for two additional nuclear reactors for Pakistan from China in addition to the Chashma I and II plants.

Chashma I went critical in 2000 and Chashma II is due to begin operations in 2011. China claims the additional reactors are a follow on to these two. It says it does not need NSG approval as the agreement for the first two reactors were inked before China joined the NSG.

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