AKIPRESS.COM - U.S. President Joe Biden has reiterated America’s support for India’s permanent membership on a reformed United Nations Security Council and its entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group during his first in-person bilateral meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the White House on September 24, Free Press Journal reported.
President Biden, in his talks with Prime Minister Modi, applauded India’s “strong leadership” during its UN Security Council Presidency in August 2021, according to the US-India Joint Leaders’ Statement issued after their meeting in the White House on Friday.
“In this context, President Biden also reiterated US support for India’s permanent membership on a reformed UN Security Council and for other countries who are important champions of multilateral cooperation and aspire to permanent seats on the UN Security Council,” it said.
President Biden’s support provides a big boost to New Delhi’s push for the reform of the powerful UN organ as India has been at the forefront of efforts at the United Nations to push for an urgent long-pending reform of the Security Council, emphasizing that it rightly deserves a place at the UN high table as a permanent member.
India in June asserted that the Inter-Governmental Negotiations (IGN) on UN Security Council reforms can no longer be used as a smokescreen, as the General Assembly decided to roll over the IGN work to the next UNGA session and agreed to include an amendment proposed by the G4 nations of Brazil, Germany, India and Japan.
At present, the UNSC comprises five permanent members and 10 non-permanent member countries which are elected for a two-year term by the General Assembly of the United Nations.
The five permanent members are Russia, the UK, China, France and the United States and these countries can veto any substantive resolution.
There has been growing demand to increase the number of permanent members to reflect the contemporary global reality.
During his meeting with Prime Minister Modi, President Biden also reaffirmed US support for India’s entry to the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the joint statement said.
The Nuclear Suppliers Group or NSG is a 48-member grouping which regulates global nuclear commerce. 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 Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) should be allowed to enter the organization.
India and Pakistan are not signatories of the NPT.
After India's application, Pakistan too has applied for the NSG membership in 2016.
China maintains that there would be no discussion on India's entry into the NSG before reaching a specific understanding on non-NPT members' participation in the elite grouping; it has, however, declined to give a timeline for reaching a consensus.