Pakistan on Wednesday cautioned that India’s introduction of destabilising systems such as missile defence programmes and inter-continental ballistic missiles was posing a danger to regional peace and stability.
These concerns were conveyed to a delegation of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), a grouping of 35 states that seeks to prevent missile proliferation by adhering to common export policy guidelines related to missile technologies.
The delegation headed by Ham Sang-Wook, Director General for Non-Proliferation and Nuclear Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea, who holds the current MTCR Chair held talks with the Pakistani side led by Tasnim Aslam, Additional Secretary (UN&EC) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
A statement issued by the foreign office said the agenda for talks included latest political and technical developments in the MTCR. Additional Secretary Tasnim Aslam briefed the delegation on Pakistan’s contribution to international efforts aimed at preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery.
The MTCR delegation was briefed on the administrative, legislative and regulatory measures for the establishment of a robust command and control system, an effective and comprehensive export control regime as well as steps to improve physical security at all levels.
“Pakistan’s export control regime is at par with the best international standards and its national control lists encompass the items and technologies controlled by the MTCR,” she informed the delegation.
The Pakistan side underscored that efforts to prevent proliferation should not hamper the right of developing countries to access advanced technologies for peaceful purposes when appropriate safeguards were in place.
The Additional Secretary (UN&EC) also highlighted the risks posed to regional peace and stability due to the introduction of destabilizing systems such as missile defence programmes and inter-continental ballistic missiles.
Pakistan was, however, committed to avoiding any kind of arms race in South Asia, she said, adding that Pakistan’s proposal on establishing Strategic Restraint Regime (SRR) in South Asia which covers nuclear and missile restraint remains on the table.
“Pakistan believes that progress on this proposal through meaningful dialogue can promote peace and stability in the region,” she emphasised. “Pakistan has been engaging with the MTCR for several years. It has also been participating in the MTCR technical meetings and has also hosted several outreach missions in Islamabad,” the foreign office statement said.
Meanwhile, pursuant to the Export Control on Goods, Technologies, Material and Equipment related to Nuclear and Biological Weapons and their Delivery Systems Act 2004, the Government of Pakistan on Wednesday notified revised Control Lists of Goods, Technologies, Material and Equipment related to Nuclear and Biological Weapons and their Delivery Systems.
“The Act enables the Government to control export, re-export, trans-shipment and transit of goods, technologies, material and equipment related to Nuclear and Biological Weapons and their Delivery Systems,” the statement said.
As part of regular review process, the Strategic Export Control Division (SECDIV) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has revised/updated the Control Lists, in consultation with other relevant Ministries and Departments.
The revised Control Lists have been notified vide Gazette of Pakistan S.R.O. 1142(I)/2016 dated 18 November 2016. It may be mentioned that the lists were originally notified in 2005 and subsequently revised in 2011 and 2015. The notification signifies the continuing resolve and policy of Pakistan as a responsible nuclear state to advance the shared goals of non-proliferation and strictly adhere to its commitments.