India's chances 'very good' on Wassenaar membership says Russian Federation

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In a significant development, elite export control regime Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) on Thursday made a decision to admit India as its new member, which is expected raise New Delhi's stature in the field of non-proliferation besides helping it acquire critical technologies.

Membership to the Wassenaar Arrangement would give India a chance for a closer interaction with member-states and also hold up its credentials, despite not being a signatory to the NPT, said an official.

The two-day plenary session of the 41-member club commenced today.

"If everything goes as expected".

"We recognise that at the moment there is no unanimity on Pakistan's application and that the same can not be interlinked with India's", said Ryabkov, after his meeting with Jaishankar. On Monday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will meet with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj before a Russia-India-China (RICS) meeting along with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, and Russian Deputy PM Dmitry Rogozin later this month.

The Wassenaar Arrangement plays a significant role in promoting transparency and greater responsibility in transfers of conventional arms and dual-use goods and technologies. Asked for his reaction to Ryabkov's comments, Geng said all the members of the NSG supported the two-step approach-to find non-discriminatory solution that applies to all non-NPT countries then on that basis discuss the application of the non-NPT counties.

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"We want to bring the group back to its roots and make it possible for the group to consider everyone's supporting applications on its merits and this is how it should be done in case of India", he said. But it is not a member of the Wassenaar Arrangement, the MTCR and the Australia Group.

Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov has admitted that Russian Federation was looking to build ties with Pakistan, a country he described as taking great interest in multilateral forums.

In June previous year, India joined the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), another key export control regime, as a full member.

China, which blocked New Delhi's plea for admission into the NSG, is not a member of the Wassenaar Arrangement. After India's application for entry into the elite group which controls nuclear trade, Pakistan, China's all-weather ally, too had applied with the tacit backing of Beijing.

"So, I don't think it will possible to interlink the application of India and Pakistan for becoming members of the NSG", he said.

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