The US on Thursday said it fully supports the "clean" Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) exception for India and that nothing in the new restrictive guidelines issued by the NSG will detract from the nuclear deal between the two countries.
"Nothing about the new enrichment and reprocessing (ENR) transfer restrictions agreed to by NSG members should be construed as detracting from the unique impact and importance of the US-India agreement or our commitment to full civil nuclear cooperation," said state department spokesperson Victoria Nuland.
The NSG is meeting in The Hague to approve new enrichment and reprocessing guidelines which India feared would undo the waiver granted to India by the NSG following the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal.
For one thing, India is not a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and the new guidelines are expected to make the NPT signature mandatory for ENR eligibility. The US said while it supports the new guidelines, which have been agreed to unanimously, "The NSG's NPT references, including those in the ENR guidelines, in no way detract from the exception granted to India by NSG members in 2008 and in no way reflect upon India's nonproliferation record."
"These references reinforce the commitment of NSG members to prevent the transfer of items that could be used for weapons purposes, which is the mission of the regime itself and a basic nonproliferation principle shared by India."
The US also iterated that it fully supports India's membership of the four export control regimes: NSG, Australia Group, Wassenaar Arrangement and the Missile Technology Control Regime.