March 20, 2018

India Granted Membership of Wassenaar Arrangement

08 December 2017, 07:21 | Taylor George

India gets admission into Wassenaar Arrangement

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The Ambassador of France Alexandre Ziegler tweeted his country's congratulations.

Earlier this year, India had updated its export control lists to bring them in line with global standards, including those required by the Wassenaar Arrangement.

Official sources said the plenary meeting of the 41- member grouping was examining India's application for its membership.

In a major development, leading export control regime Wassenaar Arrangement on Friday made a decision to admit India as its new member.

"The United States welcome the successful conclusion of the #WassenaarArrangement plenary, which offered #India membership, agreed upon over 80 control list updates, & (and) exchanged views on #proliferation challenges", the U.S. mission to UN in Vienna tweeted.

The United States, which has a nuclear cooperation deal with India, considers it a nuclear power that plays by the rules and is not a proliferator, and wants to bring Asia's third largest economy into the 48-member group.

The WA is the second multilateral export control regime that opened up its door for India. In June past year, India joined the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) as a full member. The MTCR's primary objective to restrict proliferation of missiles, complete rocket systems, unmanned air vehicles, and related technology for systems capable of carrying a 500 kilogram payload at least 300 kilometres, as well as systems intended for the delivery of weapons of mass destruction.

Taking a dig at the United States for not pushing China to remove its objections to India's membership at the NSG as Russian Federation had, Mr. Ryabkov said, "Unlike some other countries that only speak of support, Russian Federation takes actual steps to help and actions speak more than words..."

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China, a key member of the NSG, has been stridently opposing India's bid primarily on the grounds that New Delhi is not a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

The NSG controls global nuclear commerce.

China, which is not a member of WA, has stonewalled India's entry into the NSG.

India's membership in the Wassenaar Arrangement partly hinged on a lack of consensus, with Italy having objected to New Delhi's participation until the two countries repaired their bilateral relationship this year following a multiple-year spat over the fate of two Italian marines who killed two Indian fishermen in 2012.

China blocked India's entry to the NSG when the cartel had its 26th plenary in South Korea in June 2016.

Ryabkov said Russian Federation has been "very straightforward" and "vocal" in supporting India in its endeavour of getting NSG membership because of the country's "impeccable and impressive record" in the area of non-proliferation.

Beijing on Thursday reiterated that its position on admitting new members to the NSG remained unchanged.

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