Pakistan seeks Russia, South Korea and New Zealand's support for NSG berth

Published: June 9, 2016
Sartaj speaks to foreign ministers of Russia, South Korea and New Zealand. PHOTO: ISPR

Sartaj speaks to foreign ministers of Russia, South Korea and New Zealand. PHOTO: ISPR

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan launched a concerted diplomatic push for a membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) after the United States backed India’s bid to join the 48-nation informal but exclusive club of nuclear trading countries.

Last month, Islamabad formally applied for a NSG membership, setting the stage for a possible showdown with New Delhi when preliminary negotiations start on the issue in Vienna next week.

Pakistan tells US it qualifies for nuclear suppliers club

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi secured Washington’s backing on Tuesday for New Delhi’s bid for a membership of the NSG after talks with US President Barack Obama.

However, Pakistan warned against any country-specific exemptions, which according to a senior Foreign Office official, would negatively impact strategic stability in South Asia.

On Wednesday, Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz spoke by the phone with foreign ministers of Russia, South Korea and New Zealand as part of Pakistan’s continuing diplomatic efforts towards mobilising support for the country’s application for NSG membership.

“His interlocutors expressed support for a non-discriminatory approach on NSG expansion to non-NPT states,” said a statement issued by the Foreign Office.

Nuclear chess

Separately, the Foreign Office arranged a detailed briefing for diplomatic missions of NSG countries in Islamabad. Additional Secretary United Nations and Economic Coordination Ambassador Tasnim Aslam briefed the envoys and other diplomats about Pakistan’s credentials for joining the NSG.

A statement issued by the Foreign Office said Aslam highlighted factors which placed Pakistan’s application for a NSG membership on solid grounds, including Pakistan’s technical experience, capability and well-established commitment to non-proliferation and nuclear safety and security.

While urging the NSG member states to adopt an objective and non-discriminatory criterion for membership of non-NPT states, she cautioned against country-specific exemptions, which would negatively impact strategic stability in South Asia.

On May 19, in a letter addressed to the NSG chairman, Pakistan’s ambassador in Vienna stated that the country’s decision to seek participation in the export control regime reflected Pakistan’s strong support for international efforts to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery.

Pakistan applies for accession to NSG

“Pakistan has the expertise, manpower, infrastructure, as well as the ability to supply NSG-controlled items, goods and services for a full range of nuclear applications for peaceful uses,” the ambassador added.

The Foreign Office statement said: “Pakistan attaches high priority to nuclear safety and security. It has taken legal, regulatory and administrative measures to bring nuclear safety and security at par with international standards.”

“Pakistan’s export control regime is underpinned by strong legislation, regulatory and enforcement mechanisms. The national export control lists are harmonized with the control lists of NSG, MTCR and Australia Group.”

Islamabad sought a membership of the exclusive nuclear trading club after Western countries, led by the US, quietly launched diplomatic efforts to induct India into the NSG.

Membership of the NSG would increase India’s global clout and provide a vested interest in curbing the world’s most dangerous regional arms race, but the prospects are fraught with uncertainties.

The campaign for India’s membership is seen carrying the risk of antagonising Pakistan and its ally China, which could veto India’s application. Beijing could also insist as a condition of India’s membership that Pakistan also be allowed to join, a potential hard sell because of Islamabad’s development of new tactical nuclear weapons.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 9th, 2016.

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Reader Comments (51)

    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:14AM

    Do Not WASTE TIME ON ANY COUNTRY, only turkey, Finland or Austria will provide tactical support to china,s veto. India also knows it will not succeed this time , its is preparation for next year when china will also agree Recommend

  • Ahsan
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:15AM

    We are a small country, its quite natural for us to be in this situation, however, im sure China will veto indias move, or also force international community to let us join the group also, no worries, our relations with us have dwindled and thats good for us as a nation Recommend

  • BlackHat
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:21AM

    Not counting others, killing of Mullah Mansoor recently and OBL a few years ago on Pakistani soil, puts the country in an awkward situation with respect to harboring terrorists wanted by other countries. Despite official denials, it is public knowledge that the likes of Dawood Ibrahim, Masood Azhar, Hafiz Sayed, Haqqanis and others are not hiding but living openly with state protection.

    As long as this policy of duplicity and blackmail exists, barring China, no country is going to whole heartedly support Pakistan, except, may be, as a tactical bargaining position, ultimately only to let down.

    Pakistan must abandon this policy to come out of isolation it is in. It is so way past expiration date that the rot is smelling.

    Pakistan can more effectively influence the course of international events by economic integration with rest of the world.

    No one cares about a place where they can’t make a buck.Recommend

  • Anon
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:28AM

    India got openly “DECLARED” support from almost all major countries, while Pakistan has no country support except ChinaRecommend

  • Sumi
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:38AM

    Lmao….the countries you have mentioned Russia & South Korea are closed ally of India, they have billions of dollars business with India… They have backed India in many forums….
    not only Russia, South Korea but India has support of all big stake holders like Japan, USA, Switzerland, France, Britain, Germany, Australia, Israel etc ….
    while Pakistan has only China on it’s side ..Recommend

  • HBK
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:40AM

    Lol…do whatever you can, but truth is India has support from all big countries, while pak has no one except ChinaRecommend

  • Carbon Khan
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:42AM

    These news will come again and again until and unless Govt. become serious about new way of tactical weapons. Day by day, they are increasing the defense budget but don’t look at the real problem which we are lacking. Increase in research and development budget will not only boost our economy but it will open new door of opportunity.Recommend

  • Aman
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:47AM

    South Korea is a staunch rival of China and strong business & strategic partner of India….
    Russia has been traditionally pro India country, India Russia have billions dollars of defence, business, strategic partnership, so none of these two countries will pay attention to Pak’s requestRecommend

  • SEAsian
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:49AM

    What about the AQ Khan Nuclear Blackmarket?Recommend

  • from bharat
    Jun 9, 2016 - 9:59AM

    why would south korea support? because Pakistan provided nuclear technology to north korea! your record is not good. and you are increasing your nuclear arsenal so fast.Recommend

  • Sunil
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:01AM

    Pakistan double game policy is cost everything at the international level.Recommend

  • Rajesh
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:03AM

    Yes truly said ghazal do not waste your time & our time, and do not fool others without joining MTCR how can you join directly to NSG, & besides who will support you except china. probably by this year end again they sitting for NSG meet by that time India may be admitted to NSG. Honestly India’s joining of NSG is doubtful how can pakistan dream of NSG bid with only china on their side. Recommend

  • qasim
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:06AM

    We are in the group of defamed AQK network… the biggest proliferator in the world. And we think we can make some phone calls and work it out. We needed strong diplomatic push, where we have failed misearbly as usual.. no hopes here. Recommend

  • auranzaib ali
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:27AM

    inshallah. Pakistan and China will gain more support for ncg. Recommend

  • Hassan Ilyas
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:31AM

    I swear Toooooo many Indians trolling over here, phewww….guyz focus on securing NSG membership for urself, which will remain a dream as China will keep on using Veto against India. never mind guyz not possible.never, ghazal mam please tell us why would china support India for NSG next year any special offers?????? what make u think that way???? and it is next to impossible for India to secure NSG membership at least in next 10 to 20 years.. Recommend

  • Raj - USA
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:35AM

    Don’t count on China’s veto yet. China knows that it will be isolated and its veto will help bring India and USA even closer. Public opinion in India will tilt even further in favor of Indo-US alliance against China. More opposition for China in USA would result in shifting of more US business, manufacturing ventures and investments from China to India. Recommend

  • vinsin
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:39AM

    This is the toughest decision Pakistan has to make and that too probably at the max in a year that to trade nuclear weapons for economic development or not. For Pakistan to become NSG member – Pakistan has to shun support for terrorists, sign MTCR and would loose both tactical and long range missiles, control development of Nuclear weapons etc. Even after that it would be not an easy task because of past record of massive proliferation.

    For China this is even more difficult situation to whether support India or not, whether to abandon Pakistan or not.

    Pakistan should need to connect to world committee more and resolve their issues too and learn to be part of that not being an isolated state. Time is not their on Pakistani side.

    Expecting support for South Korea should be last thing on Pakistani foreign policy, a country which to destroy Pakistan gave Nuclear weapons to North Korea.Recommend

  • sk
    Jun 9, 2016 - 10:56AM

    Lets wait & watch! The credentials of China, India & Pakistan at global stage would be known to all. US has clearly ignored their ally in the past.Recommend

  • Khan
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:01AM

    Fathom the stupidity of a nation and its obsession with arms whose 58% population is declared food insecure by its own ministry of food security and research. About 45% of children below the age 5 are born chronically malnourished i.e. physically stunted and mentally incapacitated – never mind the shameful literacy rate of 56%. To summarize the plight in one figure, Pakistan ranks at 146th out of 187 countries on Human Development Index – below Nepal and Bangladesh! What are they trying to protect? Hunger, disease and Ignorance? Enough said. Recommend

  • Mallikarjun
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:22AM

    Lol , this article is more about stopping india entering NSG than making efforts for pakistan’s entry.

    It shows Pakistan itself has no ability to enter NSG by its ownRecommend

  • Dr. Ashraf Kh
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:33AM

    India like to bee member of club in order to continue her hegemony in South Asia and Indian Ocean.

    India is successfully convinced the western world that her nuclear doctrine is against China, but matter of fact she is circling Pakistan. A recent Moodi diplomatic visit to the Gulf countries, Iran and Afghanistan is nothing more than to antagonist and marginalize State of Pakistan.

    Obviously world superpower games are changing. It will be best interest of motherland Pakistan to play active role in Shanghai Security Pact and create Euro – Asia Security pact with Russia, China, Turkey, Iran and Central Asian countries to counter India hegemony in this region. Recommend

  • Sunil
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:36AM

    It is the Nuclear Suppliers Group … The word SUPPLIER is important. What have you got to supply others? I do not think terror training camps are acceptable !! We do not care one bit of you join or not, we do not care if you are a member of the MRCT or not. Please do all you can to keep up with India and I hope your defense budge increases to $50 billion or more, in fact make it much larger then India’s. See what happens when your people revolt, because they do not get the services, infrastructure, etc, they want. Please just do it soon. By the way India’s budget is going to increase to $60 billion next year by the end of Modi’s term it will be around $90 billion. Good luck.

    Oh, I forgot to say … yes there is still a lot more money left over for toilets and electrification of all of India. India is a world leader in using Solar and wind generation of electricity, even the western nations are looking at our solutions.Recommend

  • Zen
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:36AM

    Foreign portfolio is is the domain of the establishment. As with all other foreign policies, they are in hibernation until their wives knock their heads for them to wake up. Now they think a few days will help them with their cause.Recommend

  • Observer
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:38AM

    You are acting as if India has purchased all those countries around the world with whom it trades, to form their “foreign policy” as per suitable to India. :-D Recommend

  • Vijay
    Jun 9, 2016 - 12:04PM

    @Dr. Ashraf Kh: You are obsessed with India and imagine everything we do is Pakistan centric. Truth is we are securing our trade and business. The pact we do are for trade, oil, hydrocarbons, infrastructurem defence manufacturing in india etc. It was pakistan that blocked India’s route to Central asia, we found route to bypass Pakistan and do trade with Central Asia. We are seeking relationship with Latin america , Middle East, asean countries to increase India’s trade. Seeking to “make in india” be space, IT, Defence, nuclear energy power, solar power. It’s absurd you expect india should not have trade relations with any country coz it hurts Ur ego.. and then blame it as being Pakistan centric. Recommend

  • Acorn Guts
    Jun 9, 2016 - 12:12PM

    Merely trying to block India here. There is no way Pakistan has enough support in NSG for inclusion. Not yet.Recommend

  • from bharat
    Jun 9, 2016 - 12:38PM

    @Dr. Ashraf Kh i can see u are not a learned doctor. how can u say that doing trade with Iran, Afghanistan and central Asia is all about isolating Pakistan. u are isolating urself. we asked u to let us trade with afghan through ur territory. u didn’t allow, we found bypass, now you are crying. why? btw what do you practice? i mean ur degreeRecommend

  • Salim Khan
    Jun 9, 2016 - 12:48PM

    All the three countries support India but does not support Pakistan. In fact when Pakistan submitted the application, the diplomats at UN were laughing at the audacity of Pakistan and various Jokes about Pakistan are making the rounds among the diplomats. The Pakistan foreign policy has become a joke because the Nawaz Sharif Govt does not control it for the last 2 years. Recommend

  • Shahid
    Jun 9, 2016 - 1:08PM

    Never too late and this is the time where Pakistan’s diplomatic channels should not stop to lobby for NSG membership. Contemporary, China’s objections will get enough support in the preliminary negotiations in Vienna. India will not get membership this year but still they are trying now it is all about next year. Pakistan should reach out to all states for a strong bid for NSG.Recommend

  • Abhishek
    Jun 9, 2016 - 1:55PM

    Dear Readers India dose not bother Pakistan as they are very progressive & educated fraternity & known for their talent in the world.
    All they are doing not to keep pace with pakistan but they want to match US & other developed countries in the world for providing better life to their citizens.
    Believe me Pakistan is the only country which harbour terrorists & fund them & waste money on nurturing terrorism rather going ahead we are ahead in pulling the world & disturbing the world.Recommend

  • Rajesh
    Jun 9, 2016 - 2:57PM

    & all have agreed upon unconditionally. Recommend

  • Anon
    Jun 9, 2016 - 3:13PM

    @Dr Ashraf kh… ,,what makes you think that Russia, Turkey, Iran and Central Asian countries will ignore Economic superpower India and go with Pak which has nothing much to offer……
    infact, your neighbour Iran Afghanistan showed thumb to your country and signed Chahbahar pact with IndiaRecommend

  • Anuj
    Jun 9, 2016 - 3:28PM

    @Salim Khan ‘The diplomats in the UN were laughing at the audacity of Pakistan to submit application and various jokes were making rounds about Pakistan’. If what you said is true then mate you just made my day and now its me who can’t stop laughing.Recommend

  • Rajat
    Jun 9, 2016 - 4:39PM

    Pak in the past shared nuke technologies to countries like North Korea and Iran and this thing still in minds of many countries. All believe Pakistan is not a Responsible country. This is the only reason your country is not able to get trust from many countries excluding china. Face It, your country lost the TRUST level on the points like:-

    1) Nuclear technologies
    2) Terrorism Fight
    3) Large number of Extremist Groups.
    4) Also, not a bigger one but, BALUCHISTAN movement.Recommend

  • Generally Gobar
    Jun 9, 2016 - 7:45PM

    With the 3,789th Nuquelar threat issued by pak in the recent past, it has accomplished all of the requisite milestones and mandatory requirements to become a member of the NSG; it would be an ultimate shame and a reflection of the credibility of NSG if it doesn’t admit pak; aq khan should be physically present in Seoul to motivate and garner support lest it doesn’t transpire.

    Good luck.Recommend

  • Kim kong Jong-un
    Jun 9, 2016 - 8:40PM

    We republic of North Korea support our brothers pakistan, both our nation same, same problem. same friend.Recommend

  • Thomas
    Jun 9, 2016 - 8:43PM


    Dude, it’s NSG not UNSC where China have Veto powers. China them-self became a member only in 2004. Here everything depends on majority and consensuses. Please get some correct facts. :-PRecommend

  • IndianDude
    Jun 9, 2016 - 8:53PM

    The world should not allow Pakistan to be part of NSG as Pakistan may benefit from nuclear power generation, unless, pakistan is willing to share the highly secretive,’water powered engine’ technology with the rest of the world.
    Pakistan has perfected the water powered engine which received a stamp of approval from its father of nuclear tech, AQ Khan?Recommend

  • observer
    Jun 9, 2016 - 11:18PM

    “Pakistan seeks Russia, South Korea and New Zealand’s support for NSG berth”

    Reminds me of a case here in the US where a convicted felon wanted to join the neighborhood crime watch group.Recommend

  • Saad
    Jun 10, 2016 - 12:28AM

    China will not veto India but will also request to accommodate Pakistan! This will happen. Recommend

  • numbersnumbers
    Jun 10, 2016 - 2:21AM

    But Pakistan was already part of the NSG courtesy of Dr Khans efforts in providing nuclear technology to Rogue States like North Korea! That should count for something?Recommend

  • hamza khan
    Jun 10, 2016 - 2:59AM


    dawood ibrahim is not in pakistan, if you have a shred of evidence corroborated by a partial agency i’d like to see it. masood azhar and the others you mentioned are pakistani nationals and have no criminal cases against them. if and when they do they will face the court of law inside pakistan. thats none of your business. Recommend

  • Bharat
    Jun 10, 2016 - 4:38AM

    Pakistan’ best bet is to ask A.Q.Khan to help here
    A man of influence and data from the NetherlandsRecommend

  • Faisal Afzal
    Jun 10, 2016 - 5:09AM

    May the nation with highest kickback win our contracts.Recommend

  • Utsaahi Baalak
    Jun 10, 2016 - 8:17AM

    Goddamn it comrade, you disclosed our secret. This time it was a false flag operation. Now we know who’s against us and why. Inshallah, Next time we will start and finish smoothly. Admission in missile regime is enough to chew upon for now. Let’s find out what we can do with it. Its a new toy in our hand. Expect us.Recommend

  • F.Bokhari
    Jun 10, 2016 - 11:38AM

    Pakistan had great powered and will be great. Pakistan needs just help of Almighty Allah pak army may defeat any one with his own power. Recommend

  • vinsin
    Jun 10, 2016 - 12:11PM

    Every country has veto power in NSG. Recommend

  • Muntazar
    Jun 10, 2016 - 2:16PM

    Dont forget pakistani nuke proliferation. AQ network and Saudi Arabia declaration of possession of nukes. It wont be long before ISIS nukes somewhere and pakistan will be questioned. Recommend

  • sterry
    Jun 10, 2016 - 10:41PM

    @Hassan Ilyas: Indians are obsessed with Pakistan. World isn’t stupid. They know India started nuclear arms race in South Asia in the first place when they took Canadian foreign aid donated Candu reactor and diverted it from energy production to making weapons of mass destruction. A country where over 500 million people don’t have toilets is also the biggest buyer of arms and weapons. The government of India is its own worse enemy for its people.Recommend

  • Indian
    Jun 11, 2016 - 12:59AM

    @auranzeb ali::MY BROTHER FROM PAKISTAN PRAYED TO ALMIGHTY” ALLAH”(MAY PEACE BE UPON HIM) that Pak should get entry in NSG but my friend first write correct spelling of it you have written ncg.. I don’t know which group is that may b posssible god will make u enter in that group…but not iN NSGRecommend

  • Gp65
    Jun 11, 2016 - 4:04AM

    @Thomas: consensus means everyone has to agree. That means effectively that anyone who disagrees is exercising a veto. This is unfortunately true.Recommend

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