BEIJING, May 23 (Xinhua) — The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) should decide whether non-signatories to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) are eligible to join the organization before any decision is made on Pakistan’s bid for membership, a spokesperson said on Monday.
Founded in London in 1975, the NSG controls the export and re-transfer of nuclear weapons materials. It has taken NPT signatory status as a precondition for membership but Pakistan is not a signatory to the treaty.
“The group is still discussing accession of non-signatories and major differences persist,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said at a regular news briefing when asked if China backs Pakistan’s application.
“China and many other countries have called for thorough discussion on the first step in membership application by non-signatories,” Hua said.
She said China’s stance applies to all non-signatories, including Pakistan. “Pakistan is China’s all-weather friend and close neighbor.China’s position does not target at the country.”