China contradicts NPT consensus by supplying nuclear reactors to Pakistan

Discussion in 'Indo Pacific & East Asia' started by Mikesingh, Aug 1, 2016.

  1. Mikesingh

    Mikesingh Senior Member Senior Member

    Sep 7, 2015
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    Tora Bora
    NEW DELHI: While China continues to hail the nuclear non-proliferation treaty+(NPT) as the cornerstone of global non-proliferation regime, Beijing itself has violated the consensus arrived at the 2010 NPT review conference on supply of nuclear technology by transferring nuclear reactors to Pakistan.

    This observation on China's supply of nuclear reactors to Pakistan, a country which is not under IAEA safeguards, comes from Arms Control Association, one of leading authorities on nuclear weapons and disarmament, in its latest report assessing progress on non-proliferation.

    China has blocked India's membership of Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) saying that participation of a non-NPT signatory in the group will weaken the international non-proliferation regime.

    The report says that the China's 2013 deal for the Chasma-3 reactor in Pakistan contradicts the consensus document of the 2010 NPT Review Conference, which "reaffirms that new supply arrangements" for the transfer of nuclear materials and technology should require that the recipient accept "IAEA full-scope safeguards and international legally-binding commitments not to acquire nuclear weapons". Islamabad has accepted neither.

    India, which has not signed NPT, has singled out China for creating procedural hurdles in its NSG membership bid but has also chosen to remain engaged with Beijing over the issue, hoping that it will review its position at some stage. Ahead of the NSG meetings in Vienna and Seoul in June, China wrote to NSG chair Rafael Mariano Grossi saying NPT membership constituted one of the "prerequisite factors" for consideration of NSG participation and that more discussions were needed before any "specific non-NPT" state could be allowed in.

    China's NSG membership since 2004 has not come in the way of its stated supply of as many as 6 reactors to Pakistan's Chasma nuclear power complex. Beijing claims to "grandfather" the reactors to an agreement reached with Pakistan in 2003 - before it became a member of NSG - even though, as the report says, that exception should have been applicable only to the first two Chasma reactors whose sale was completed before China joined NSG.

    It is widely held that in helping Pakistan with its nuclear energy programme, China has chosen to override NSG guidelines and shown no regard for the reservations expressed by its members who control international nuclear commerce.

    "Despite progress on its export controls China continues to supply Pakistan with nuclear power reactors, despite objections that the sale of the reactors did not receive a consensus exemption from the NSG. Pakistan, which is neither an NPT member nor under full-scope IAEA safeguards, is therefore ineligible to receive such assistance under NSG rules," says the report by Arms Control Association.

    The report also accuses China of not keeping its commitment in 2000 to not help any country in the development of nuclear-capable ballistic missiles. That commitment was seen as important for China's application for membership ofMissile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) 4 years later. While India has now become a member of MTCR, China's application remains blocked.

    The biggest proliferaters in nuke technology in the world are China and Pakistan. They live in a world of their own. And China has shown what double standards really means. With ideologies so far apart, it's a miracle how an atheist China and a Muslim fundamentalist Pakistan can play ball together.

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