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India says won't sign NPT

india Updated: Sep 24, 2009 22:10 IST

India has refused to abide by the UN Security Council resolution asking all non-NPT nations to sign the pact, saying it cannot accept the "externally prescribed norms or standards" on issues that are contrary to its national interests or infringe on its sovereignty."

India maintained that it cannot join the NPT as a non-weapon country even as it reiterated its commitment to no testing and no-first-use besides non-discriminatory universal non-proliferation.

In a letter to UN Security Council President Susan E Rice, India's Permament Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri has said "India cannot accept calls for universalization of the NPT."

The development came as the UN Security Council unanimously passed a resolution asking all countries which have not signed the Non Proliferation Treaty to sign the agreement.

Citing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's statement in Parliament on July 29, Puri said "there is no question of India joining the NPT as a non-nuclear weapon state. Nuclear weapons are an integral part of India’s national security and will remain so, pending non-discriminatory and global nuclear disarmament."

He said India "cannot accept externally prescribed norms or standards on matters within the jurisdiction of its Parliament or which are not consistent with India’s constitutional provisions and procedures, or are contrary to India’s national interests or infringe on its sovereignty."

Puri contended India cannot comply with non-proliferation obligations to which it has not provided its consent.