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India says no to NPT again, terms it discriminatory

By The Assam Tribune

NEW DELH, May 30 (IANS): Against the backdrop of the UN asking it to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, India today made it clear that it can't be a party to an agreement that it regards as "discriminatory". "Our position on NPT has been clearly articulated before. India's credentials in non-proliferation are well-known," said a government source here.

"We have made it clear that we want complete, verifiable and universal disarmament," the source added.

India will not be party to any agreement that it regards as discriminatory, government sources stressed, while reiterating India's oft-repeated position.

At the end of the nearly month-long NPT review conference on Friday, the UN has asked India, Pakistan and Israel to join the NPT and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) without further delay and pre-conditions.

Issues relating to non-proliferation are likely to be discussed in the first India-US strategic dialogue, chaired by External Affairs Minister SM Krishna and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in Washington June 3.

India, a de facto nuclear weapons state, has consistently rejected the NPT on grounds that it divides the world into the nuclear haves and have-nots and has instead pitched for universal nuclear disarmament.

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