Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States Jalil Abbas Jilani has stepped up efforts to gain support of the Obama administration, US lawmakers and American think-tank for the membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group.
The Ambassador has approached the White House, the State Department, important Congressional leaders and significant think-tanks and opinion makers in the US to build a case for Pakistan and seek their support for the membership.
The group in June turned down India’s request for membership after opposition by China and several other countries, despite support from the Obama administration.
A leading senator, Edward J. Markey, a member of the Foreign Relations Committee and lawmaker from President Obama’s Democratic Party had severely criticised the administration for supporting India’s bid, saying making exemptions for New Delhi for getting membership was a ‘dangerous policy’ and would infuriate Pakistan.
In his meeting with US government officials and Congressmen, Ambassador Jilani is building Pakistan’s case for NSG membership around the country’s unambiguous commitment to the international objectives of the nuclear non-proliferation and robust command and control systems of its civilian nuclear program.
“The Ambassador has also assured the US leadership that Pakistan shares the international concerns against proliferation of WMDs and their means of delivery. Pakistan’s inclusion in the NSG would be the right decision to enhance international security,” embassy officials said.
It has been emphasised that Pakistan’s membership in the NSG would not only go a long way in strengthening the international non-proliferation regime, but also help Pakistan enhance its capabilities in harnessing peaceful uses of nuclear technology for the country’s burgeoning population of almost 200 million people, including in the fields of health, agriculture and power generation. -APP