Pakistan wants India to bring its civilian nuclear programme under the International Atomic Energy Commission’s safeguards, Pakistan Foreign Office said on Monday, according to Dawn. “We want an assurance that India’s whole three stage nuclear power programme will be under safeguards,” Director General Disarmament at the Foreign Office Kamran Akhtar said.
A round-table discussion on Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty was organised in Islamabad to prepare for the upcoming Conference on Disarmament. Akhtar said Pakistan will not agree to the treaty until it gets an assurance on the matter from India.
Akhtar alleged that India has been given “discriminatory waivers”, and only eight reactors, five tonnes of reactor-grade plutonium and a breeder programme have been included under the IAEA safeguards. Akhtar said Pakistan cannot negotiate a treaty which only bans the future production of fissile material – substances that can undergo nuclear fission reactions – and does not consider the current stockpiles. This would only “freeze the existing asymmetries”, the DG said.
“The FMCT would put Pakistan at a permanent disadvantage and undermine its security interests,” he said. The Indian reactors that are not included in the safeguards might be used for plutonium production and the existing ones could be used for a military purposes in the future, Akhtar said.
He said Pakistan should not be asked to agree to something that is not in its strategic interest. “We have to factor into consideration possible actions by India that could undermine the credibility of our nuclear deterrence,” Akhtar added.