China on Friday said that there would be no discussion on India's entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) before reaching a specific plan on participation of members who have not signed the treaty on the Non-Proliferation of nuclear weapons (NPT) in the elite grouping.
Ever since India applied for the membership of the NSG in May 2016, China has been insisting that only those countries which have signed the NPT should be allowed to enter the organisation which is a 48-member grouping that regulates the global nuclear commerce.
India and Pakistan are not signatories of the NPT. After India's application, Pakistan too applied for the NSG membership in 2016.
Answering a spate of questions whether any change of China's stand on India's entry into the NSG which is holding its plenary meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan on June 20-21, China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang told a media briefing here that the group will not discuss the entry of countries who have not signed the NPT "before reaching a specific plan".
"So there is no discussion on India's participation," he said, also declining to give a timeline to reach a consensus among member states on this issue.
Mr Lu said that Beijing was not blocking New Delhi's entry but only wanted to see rules and procedures of the NSG be followed.
"There is no blocking by certain members. Because there are procedures in the NSG and members make decisions according to the procedures and proceedings. As far as I know, this plenary meeting is being held and there will be discussions on the NPT non-parties participation and the political and legal issues concerning that," he said.
"Before reaching a specific plan, the NSG will not discuss on the participation of certain NPT non-party (countries who have not signed NPT). So there is no discussion on India''s participation," he said.
"As far China''s position is concerned, we respect the NSG rules and regulations and we will seek non-discriminatory solution that can be accepted by all," he said.