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Indo-US N-deal: China non-committal

India, which has already briefed China on the Indo-US nuclear agreement, has also sought Beijing's support at the NSG meetings.

india Updated: Apr 14, 2006 14:57 IST

Ahead of Chinese President Hu Jintao's upcoming maiden visit to the United States, China has remained non-committal on backing the Indo-US civilian nuclear agreement.

"On the nuclear cooperation between the US and India, the stance of the Chinese side is very clear-cut. The spokesman of our Foreign Ministry has on many occasions, elaborated the Chinese position on this," Vice Foreign Minister Yang Jiechie on Friday told reporters at a briefing on Hu's visit.

He was asked specifically whether China would support the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal if US President George W Bush urged Hu to back the agreement during the summit talks in the White House on April 20.

In the past, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokespersons have said that Beijing, a recognised nuclear power, has a clear-cut position on the nuclear cooperation between India and the US.

At present, the international community is working on enhancing the authority and effectiveness of the international non-proliferation regime, a spokesman had said on March 1.

"China hopes that the cooperation of relevant countries can contribute to these efforts, conforms to the regulations of the international non-proliferation regime and their own international obligations," he said.

"The Non-Proliferation Treaty serves as a corner stone of the international non-proliferation regime and has played an important role in preventing proliferation of nuclear weapons and promoting peaceful use of nuclear energy," the spokesperson said.

The Indo-US nuclear agreement, which needs approval from the 44-member Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), is apparently facing problems with countries like China objecting to the nuclear agreement reached between New Delhi and Washington. 

The Indo-US nuclear agreement, which needs approval from the 44-member Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), is apparently facing problems with countries like China objecting to the nuclear agreement reached between New Delhi and Washington.

Though senior American diplomats lobbied NSG members during its last meeting in Vienna in March to okay the Indo-US deal, the NSG did not take a decision.

Though senior American diplomats lobbied NSG members during its last meeting in Vienna in March to okay the Indo-US deal, the NSG did not take a decision.

China's stand on the Indo-US nuclear agreement could be crucial as there should be 'consensus' within the NSG members to amend its rules to pave the way for the implementation of the deal, analysts said.

India, which has already briefed China on the Indo-US nuclear agreement, has also sought Beijing's support at the NSG meetings.