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Trump administration mum on whether it raised India`s NSG bid with China

Washington: The Trump administration on Tuesday kept mum on whether it raised the issue of India’s NSG bid with the top Chinese leadership, but said it supports India’s “full membership” to the four multilateral export control regimes.

China is the only major country which has been blocking India’s entry into the 48-member Nuclear Suppliers Group.

The previous US administrations ? that of the presidents George W Bush and Barack Obama ? put India’s NSG membership on their top priority.

“Since 2010, the US has made clear our support for India?s full membership in the four multilateral export control regimes,” a State Department spokesman told PTI.

The spokesperson was asked about the efforts being done by the US for India becoming a member of the NSG.

The White House did not respond to a question whether India’s bid for NSG membership was raised by the Trump administration with the Chinese leadership.

Trump last month had a successful Summit with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Florida and had several phone calls with him.

He has said several times in the public domain that he enjoys a very good relationship with Xi.

However, issues like India’s membership to NSG is yet to figure in the talking points between the top officials of the Trump administration with those with the Chinese leadership.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also visited China and has had several rounds of talks with his Chinese counterparts.

Publicly both Trump and Tillerson have said North Korea and trade issues have been dominating their talks with China.

China is advocating a two-step “non-discriminatory” approach for admission of countries who have not signed nuclear-Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in the NSG.

As per the new stand announced by Beijing in November, it first wants to find a solution that is applicable to the admission of all non-NPT members followed by discussions to admit specific non-NPT member.

China’s stand for a non-discriminatory criteria is regarded significant as Pakistan, a close ally of Beijing too has applied for the NSG membership along with India. 

Source: Zee News