Experts ask NSG to oppose China-Pak nuclear deal

A group of 46 experts and NGOs from 14 countries have appealed to the Nuclear Suppliers Group to oppose China`s sale of two nuclear reactors to Pakistan, saying that the deal violates non-proliferation obligations and norms.

Updated: Jun 17, 2010, 22:59 PM IST

Washington: A group of 46 experts and
NGOs from 14 countries have appealed to the Nuclear Suppliers
Group to oppose China`s sale of two nuclear reactors to
Pakistan, saying that the deal violates non-proliferation
obligations and norms.

The sale of nuclear reactors by China to Pakistan is
expected to come before the 45-member NSG at its meeting in
Christchurch, New Zealand, from June 21 to June 25.
The group argues that nuclear trade with Pakistan
would not only give a state outside the nonproliferation
mainstream the rights and privileges reserved for states that
follow nonproliferation rules, but it would contribute to the
arms race in South Asia.

Based in Washington, Arms Control Association is an
advocacy group against proliferation of nuclear weapons. It
had also opposed the Indo-US civil nuclear deal.

"We strongly urge that your government raise this
issue at the upcoming meetings of the Nuclear Suppliers Group
(NSG) in Christchurch, New Zealand and make clear that such a
transfer would violate NSG guidelines," they said in a letter
to Ambassadors of NSG countries.

"We urge you to reiterate to the Chinese government
that it must not engage in nuclear trade with Pakistan in a
way that violates nonproliferation obligations and norms," it
said.
"Under the guidelines of the NSG, countries other
than the five NPT-recognized nuclear-weapon states-China,
France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States-are
not eligible to receive most nuclear exports from NSG members
unless they have IAEA full-scope safeguards in place," the
letter said.

When China joined the NSG in 20004, it had already
built a power reactor at Pakistan`s Chashma site. It claimed
at the time that it was entitled to build a second one on the
grounds that the second reactor project was covered in its
existing agreement with Pakistan, they said.

"There was no declaration at that time of any
intention to build additional nuclear power plants at Chashma.
Chinese construction of additional nuclear power plants in
Pakistan beyond what was grandfathered in 2004 would be
inconsistent with NSG guidelines and China`s commitments to
the NSG," said the letter dated June 17.

PTI