India seeks more ''transparency'' in China''s N-ties with Pak

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Betwa Sharma

New York, Feb 13 (PTI) India has sought more "clarityand transparency" in China''s nuclear cooperation withPakistan, saying Beijing needs to be more "sensitive" towardsits "genuine concerns".

Speaking on Sino-India relations at the New School inNew York, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said that India was"not against" Pakistan''s relationship with other countries butNew Delhi had some "genuine concerns about some aspects" ofthe relationship between Beijing and Islamabad.

China''s support for Pakistan''s nuclear ambitions, Raosaid, was an area where India was "seeking more clarity andtransparency and welcomed an open discussion".

Early this week, reports had indicated that China andPakistan had recently concluded an agreement under whichBeijing would construct the fourth nuclear reactor at Khushabin Pakistan''s Punjab province.

The Washington Post said, "the new reactor, ifverified, would signal yet another step forward in Pakistan''sambitious effort to modernize and expand its nuclear arsenal."

In response to a question, Rao noted that unlike theUS, China had not yet openly endorsed India''s candidacy for apermanent seat in the United Nation''s Security Council.

"China is not expressing itself openly in terms ofIndia''s candidacy," she said and hoped that "Beijing would notblock India from getting a seat when the matter came to avote."

Currently 128 out of 192 countries in the UnitedNations support India''s permanent presence in the SecurityCouncil, according to Indian officials.

Rao also said New Delhi took strong exception ofChina''s policy of issuing stapled visas to residents of Jammuand Kashmir and its presence in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

The relationship between India and China, she said,"would be stronger when China shows more sensitivity on issuesthat impinge on our sovereignty and territorial integrity."

Both sides, Rao said, were working to resolve theboundary dispute.

The current talks, she said, were a "serious attemptto arrive at a fair and mutually acceptable statements forboth side." PTI BS ZH AKJ

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