Krishna says India's 'principled' stand on CTBT won't change

     External Affairs Minister S M Krishna on Friday said that India's "principled" stand on CTBT is not likely to change unless a number of other "developments" take place to address its concerns. During a high level conference on disarmament addressed by UN General Secretary Ban Ki Moon, India and eight other countries were asked to ratify the agreement so that it comes into force. "We have taken a principled stand and so the question of India revisiting it depends on a number of other developments that would address our concerns," Krishna said. Earlier, Moon had said: "The CTBT is a fundamental building block for a world free of nuclear weapons". "By establishing a global norm against testing, the CTBT has made a significant contribution to the world community's efforts to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and to promote nuclear disarmament." India, which views the NPT as flawed and discriminatory favouring nuclear powers, has made it known to the Security Council that it cannot accept the "externally prescribed norms or standards" on issues that were contrary to its national interests or infringe on its sovereignty. "Nuclear weapons are an integral part of India's national security and will remain so, pending non-discriminatory and global nuclear disarmament," India's Permanent Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri said in a letter to the Security Council on Thursday. On Wednesday, US President Barack Obama called on countries that have not signed the NPT to comply fully with all their obligations. "We have made it clear that the Security Council has both the authority and responsibility to respond to violations of this treaty. Nations with nuclear weapons have the responsibility to move towards disarmament and those without them have the responsibility to forsake them," he had said.

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