President Obama’s ‘robust support’ shows India ready for NSG membership, says US State Department’s Nisha Biswal

Washington: With President Barack Obama voicing strong support for India’s application to join the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) agreeing to admit India, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs in the US State Department, Nisha Biswal, on Tuesday said New Delhi has ‘by-and-large’ met the criteria and countries do not have any reservation for India’s entry.

Speaking to ANI, she said President Obama’s ‘robust support’ shows the India is ready for membership in the NSG.

“On MTCR we are pretty much at the point whetre the countries who are members of the MTCR have said that the India has met that criteria. There are some technical processes that have to unfold but by and large India has met the criteria and countries have removed any reservation for that, so that is a move forward,” Biswal said.

“(On NSG) The President has voiced his very robust support that he believes India is ready for and should be considered for membership in the NSG and that process will unfold and we’re committed to doing our part,” she added.

Welcoming India’s application to join the NSG, President Obama on Tuesday re-affirmed that India is ready for membership.

In a joint statement issued after the third major bilateral summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Barack Obama, the U.S. called on ‘NSG Participating Governments’ to support India’s application when it comes up at the NSG Plenary later this month.

The U.S. also re-affirmed its support for India’s early membership of the Australia Group and Wassenaar Arrangement.

Recalling their shared commitment to preventing proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery, the two leaders looked forward to India’s imminent entry into the Missile Technology Control Regime ( MTCR).

The President thanked the Prime Minister for his substantive contribution to and active participation in 2016 Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, D.C., and welcomed his offer to host a summit on ‘Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Terrorism’ in 2018. (ANI)