Pakistan offers India moratorium on nuclear tests

Published: August 17, 2016
Will send a positive signal to NSG member states, says FO. PHOTO: ISPR

Will send a positive signal to NSG member states, says FO. PHOTO: ISPR

ISLAMABAD: As a verbal duel between Pakistan and India heats up in the backdrop of escalation of violence in the disputed region of Kashmir, Islamabad on Tuesday renewed its proposal for a bilateral agreement for a moratorium on testing of nuclear devices.

The bilateral arrangement will send a positive signal to the members of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), which are currently discussing non-proliferation commitments of non-NPT states in relation to the question of membership, Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakria said in a statement.

Analysis: Will India’s S-400 missiles checkmate Pakistan?

Pakistan and India both seek a membership of the NSG and have already voluntarily declared that they will not conduct more nuclear tests. But Zakria said the unilateral moratoriums declared by the two countries were legally non-binding and could be withdrawn unilaterally.

“A bilateral arrangement will be mutually binding and difficult to withdraw unilaterally,” he added.

The spokesperson said that following the nuclear tests in 1998, Pakistan had offered India simultaneous adherence to the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). The proposal did not elicit a favourable response from India, he regretted.

“Once again, in the larger interest of peace and stability in the region, as also in the global context, Pakistan has indicated the possibility that the two countries may consider a bilateral arrangement,” said the spokesperson.

Analysis: Will India’s S-400 missiles checkmate Pakistan?

Zakaria maintained that Pakistan’s move was reflective of its policy of promoting restraint and responsibility in South Asia and its consistent support for the objectives of the CTBT. “The bilateral non-testing arrangement, if mutually agreed, could become binding immediately without waiting for the entry into force of the CTBT at the international level,” he said.

Moreover, he said both countries could consider working out details of the arrangement and mutually agreed confidence-building measures in relation to it. “It could set the tone for further mutually agreed measures on restraint and avoidance of an arms race in South Asia.” The proposal came at a time when relations between Pakistan and India are at the lowest ebb.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 17th, 2016.

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Reader Comments (31)

  • Black Hawk
    Aug 17, 2016 - 8:59AM

    No thanks, India will not make any bilateral agreements with hostile countries & compromise on its security. As far as NSG is concerned, Pakistani leaders are delusional if they think their membership application to NSG has the same merits as India’s. Sooner or later, India will get NSG membership thanks to its growing economy & clout in the world. Pakistan will not get NSG membership in a hundred years, thanks to its nuclear proliferation record.Recommend

  • Auginpk
    Aug 17, 2016 - 9:00AM

    India has already done unilateral moratorium on nuclear test and don’t need any arrangement with any other country.

    Further India’s credentials are impeccable in this regardRecommend

  • PrakashG
    Aug 17, 2016 - 9:40AM

    What we need is a moratorium on nukes production.Recommend

  • Unknown
    Aug 17, 2016 - 9:54AM

    @Black Hawk:

    Keep dreamingRecommend

  • Srinivasulu Mekala
    Aug 17, 2016 - 10:23AM

    Really? For a moment I thought it was a joke. I think India will ignore this as a prank. Seriously speaking, there must be a dire shortage of people with even moderate IQ and minimal common sense in the Pakistani Foreign Office. They have no mental faculties such as “guessing, predicting and thinking a few moves ahead”. All that they believe in is shoot a mulish move and then scoot. Recommend

  • dave
    Aug 17, 2016 - 10:29AM

    The Government must listen to its people and no talks with India till Kashmir is with Pakistan. Please keep the sentiments. We Indians will make sure that it lasts 1500 years and more. As for CTBT, it is eyewash from Pakistan to boast their standing at the next NSG meeting.Recommend

  • Zen
    Aug 17, 2016 - 10:45AM

    The Government must listen to its people and no talks with India till Kashmir is with Pakistan. Please keep the sentiments. We Indians will make sure that it lasts 1500 years and more. As for CTBT, it is eyewash from Pakistan to boast their standing at the next NSG meeting.Recommend

    Aug 17, 2016 - 11:12AM

    A hare offering a mutual non-predation treaty to an eagle Recommend

  • سے Shaam (Hanafi)
    Aug 17, 2016 - 11:18AM

    Moratorium is between two equals, where there’s no comparison, moratorium does not exist. India no longer competes with Pakistan, it’s in a league of it’s own. Pakistan still has time to come out of India’s obsession and try to be self reliant with some self respect, else it will remain India’s poor once distant cousin.Recommend

  • Guru Vivekanand
    Aug 17, 2016 - 11:19AM

    @Unknown, wish Pakistani establishment of the sweet dreams. Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Aug 17, 2016 - 11:22AM

    @Black Hawk:
    Sounds like an Indian film.Recommend

  • Observer
    Aug 17, 2016 - 11:36AM

    It would be better if an agreement is reached on nuclear warhead production. Both the countries must stop production when they reach numbers according to their size and economy.Recommend

  • Bilal
    Aug 17, 2016 - 11:48AM

    I think its a smart move by Pakistan. India will never agree to it and Pakistan could easily say to the world “Look we making efforts to halt this nuke race and remove tension in the region, but India didn’t want it”, WELL DONE PAKISTAN. Some really smart people in the Foreign Office.Recommend

  • Vectra
    Aug 17, 2016 - 12:06PM

    Not possible,let Pakistan learn to take decisions independently irrespective of what India does or not.BTW i don’t think this will in any way improve its image as a responsible state to be considered for NSG instead Pakistan should take decisions independently sans what India does or not and unilaterally sign moratorium on nuclear testing including dismantling small Tactical Nuclear Weapons and don’t wait for India.Recommend

  • pakistani bloach
    Aug 17, 2016 - 12:10PM

    A master stroke by pakistan. Now if india agrees , pakistan’s case for NSG will get stronger and can win more members in favour AND if india refuse, china has a strong point against india.CHECKMATE india.Recommend

  • Iqbal
    Aug 17, 2016 - 12:43PM

    Can I assume you were brianwashed at a madrassa? Have you considered the fact that Pakistan has reached a stage that it is techinically bankrupt and therefore cannot afford to get involved in an arms race with India. India’s economy is booming and has many allies who want to wrap up Pakistan once and for all. To save face, Pakistan will obviously come up with this childish suggestion. No one in the world would believe them. Remember Kargil?Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Aug 17, 2016 - 1:45PM

    It is the same tactic of lies by Pakistan. Protecting OBL while lying to the world. Who on the earth believes in this drama?Recommend

  • FAZ
    Aug 17, 2016 - 2:06PM

    Indian comments above show their arrogance and attitude. Its a shame that this hypocrite world continues to support anyone with money. They fail to understand that such support gives rise to some sort of extremism. Similar was the case with Germans when the Europe blamed them for everything after the WW1. We all know what followed next. Someday some hitler will be eventually born in Pakistan too.Recommend

  • Mohammed Wani
    Aug 17, 2016 - 2:09PM

    The Pakistan Foreign Office badly needs people with minimum IQ.Recommend

  • Vectra
    Aug 17, 2016 - 2:35PM

    If Pakistan is serious it have instead offered NFU Treaty (NO First Use Treaty) similar to what India has adopted decades back.Recommend

  • Akshay
    Aug 17, 2016 - 3:26PM

    @ Faz the world will prefer a person with arrogance and attitude over a person who lies all the time. Pakistan expert DR Christine Fair’s comments “Pakistanis lie so much that you will never know when they are actually speaking the truth”. Don’t believe me google it.Recommend

  • Buzzkill
    Aug 17, 2016 - 3:49PM

    Instead of signing a moratorium with Pakistan, I suggest India should double its nuclear testing. Let This will force Pakistan to spend more resources on it as well & go bankrupt eventually.Recommend

  • Srini
    Aug 17, 2016 - 3:53PM

    @pakistani bloach:
    Dear friends, our self imposed moratorium on testing is already in place; why a stupid agreement with anyone now?? All that is required is for Pakistan to self impose a similar ban over themselves. What part of pointing this out is arrogance on the part of India?? This is not rocket science, the offer by Pakistan under these circumstances is outright ridiculous.Recommend

  • Are you kidding?
    Aug 17, 2016 - 4:25PM

    If Pakistan is determined to build nuclear weapons to bankrupt itself and blow it up, what rights do the Indians have to stop this madness?Recommend

  • FAZ
    Aug 17, 2016 - 4:59PM

    I googled Hilary Clintons speech on April 24 too. Read her comments yourself.
    PS: The world knows who Hilary Clinton is and not the Dr. who you just made a reference about. Also Ronald Regan ( I hope you know who he is) compared the then Afghan Mujahideen äs “moral equivalents of America’s founding fathers”. Now that’s some hypocrisy for youRecommend

  • Jag Nathan
    Aug 17, 2016 - 5:11PM

    Coming from a nation whose Generals were planning a war with India while their elected PM was shaking hands with his Indian counterpart, these offers have zero validity. Pakistan can keep testing her weapons till the cows come home or ihereconomy goes bankrupt. Eitger way, it does’nt bother India one wee bit.Recommend

  • dave
    Aug 17, 2016 - 5:23PM

    Are you referring to the Indian movie that Fawad Khan was in. He spoiled a beautiful movie.Recommend

  • Iqbal
    Aug 17, 2016 - 5:41PM

    While you are googling you may want to read the comments of President Musharraf. He famously said:
    “Today we (Muslims) are the poorest, the most illiterate, the most backward, the most unhealthy, the most un-enlightened, the most deprived, and the weakest of all the human race”
    Note he said “illiterate”. Is he correct or sheer hypocrisy in your own words?
    What goes around, comes around!Recommend

    Aug 18, 2016 - 2:56AM

    @FAZ For a future Hitler to do any damage he must also lead a nation of the same caliber as Germany . On the eve of the Second World War , Germany(even after being devastated by ww1 and payments of war reparations) had the second largest economy in the world after the United Stated . It’s economy was bigger than France and UK combined and about 2/3 of the combined economic output of USSR,UK,France. It was at the forefront of scientific research in so many fields ….and so many earth-shattering scientific papers were being published in the German language that German was considered the language of Physics . New tactics of concentrated armored warfare and tactical air support were being proposed and tested by the German military . Such was “Hitler’s” Germany . If a nation like Pakistan produces a Hitler ….it’ll amount to nothing more than a bad version of Libya . Recommend

  • FAZ
    Aug 18, 2016 - 9:57AM

    Sir gee
    Your chest thumping aside, I believe my comments were in reference to nuclear weapons. Hitler did not had one I remember. And doesn’t it surprize you that a “non Muslim”, progressive and open minded state like Germany can also have a dark side when pushed against the wall? I hope my point is clear enough and this gets published by ETRecommend

  • Sandip
    Aug 19, 2016 - 11:43PM

    @Bilal: The rest of the world is slightly more smarter than what you think it is.Recommend

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