Acknowledging that India is “inching closer” to entering the NSG, Chinese official media today warned that India’s inclusion in the grouping will “shake” the strategic balance in South Asia and “cast” a cloud over peace and stability in the entire Asia-Pacific region.
“New Delhi seems to have inched closer to NSG membership after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi gained backing from the US, Swiss and Mexico in its bid to join the elite nuclear club earlier this month,” an article in the
‘Global Times’ said mentioning for the first time India’s progress in its bid to join the 48-member elite grouping.
At the same time the article by Fu Xiaoqiang, a research fellow with the state-run think tank China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, warned that India’s entry into Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) will “shake strategic balance in South Asia and even cast a cloud over peace and stability in the entire Asia-Pacific region”.
It said China could support India’s inclusion in the nuclear club if it “played by the rules”.
It is the second article in as many days by the same daily highlighting China’s strident and vocal opposition to India’s entry into the NSG and concerns that its all-weather ally Pakistan will be left behind because “entry into the NSG will make it (India) a ‘legitimate nuclear power’.”
“Becoming a member of the NSG, a bloc that governs civilian nuclear trade worldwide, will grant India global acceptance as a legitimate nuclear power,” said the article.
A commentary in the same daily on June 14 had said that India’s admission into NSG would “jeopardise” China’s national interest and touch a “raw nerve” in Pakistan.
“If it joins the group, New Delhi will be able to import civilian nuclear technology and fuels from the international market more conveniently, while saving its domestic nuclear materials for military use,” said the article in the Global Times, a tabloid daily which is part of the ruling Communist Party of China group of publications headed by People’s Daily.
“The major goal for India’s NSG ambition is to obtain an edge over Islamabad in nuclear capabilities. Once New Delhi gets the membership first, the nuclear balance between India and Pakistan will be broken,” the article titled
“Beijing could support India’s NSG accession path if it plays by rules”.
The reason why India has scored a big win in garnering support for its NSG membership from some countries is because Washington has started to treat New Delhi as part of the US alliance, the write-up said.
“It was only several years ago that Modi could not even get a US visa, but now he has visited the US more often than any other country during his two years in office,” it said.