Ban on production of fissile material ‘unacceptable’: Pakistan

Thursday, October 14, 2010

UNITED NATIONS - Pakistan opposes the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT) that banned production of fissile material used as fuel for nuclear weapons, the Asian nation has told the world community.

“Over the past few years, some powerful countries, in pursuit of their commercial interests as well as dubious notions of balance of power, have embarked upon an unfettered and discriminatory nuclear cooperation arrangement in gross violation of their international commitments,” the Daily Times quoted Pakistan Ambassador, Zamir Akram, as saying to the General Assembly’s Disarmament and International Security Committee.

He added that a growing asymmetry in military capabilities between major powers, medium and small states had further increased insecurity among states, and in crucial regions, the pursuit of great power politics had destabilised the tenuous regional balance.

The Pakistani delegate asserted that while some states had been denied the right to peaceful nuclear cooperation, others were supported in promoting unsafe nuclear programmes, building and upgrading strategic weapon systems, including anti-ballistic ones, thereby accelerating vertical nuclear proliferation.

He also said that the UN disarmament machinery were not a handmaiden to the whims of the major powers.

Though Akram did not name any country in his speech, he obviously had the US-India nuclear deals in mind because it is well known that India has a larger stock of fissile material and a greater capacity to build warheads than Pakistan, the paper said.

A senior Pakistani diplomat also said that the FMCT was unacceptable, adding that it was only purported to ban the future production of fissile material and would permanently freeze a strategic disadvantage for Pakistan.

Since January, Pakistan has been blocking the launching of negotiations on the proposed treaty at the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva on the ground that it is prejudicial to its national security interests. (ANI)

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