India is a force for global good: Foreign Secy

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New Delhi, Feb. 22 (FN Bureau) Prime Minister Narendra Modi, by delivering on his promise at the UN General Assembly to make Indian manufactured vaccines affordable and accessible to all humanity, has once again shown that India is a force for global good, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said on Monday. Addressing the High-Level Segment of the Conference on Disarmament under the Presidency of Brazil, a fellow G-21 country, the Foreign Secretary said that the Covid-19 pandemic has been perhaps the most disruptive global event in our collective memory. While the pandemic exposed the vulnerabilities, it has also underlined the need for global solidarity and strengthened multilateralism.

We have the same approach to global issues, including those pertaining to international security and peace. In this regard, India is also making an important contribution as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2021-22,' he said.We begin this year with hope and expectation. India has welcomed the extension of the New START Treaty between the Russian Federation and the United States. However, much work needs to be done by us in the Conference on Disarmament. We need to rise above our differences, and demonstrate political will and genuine intent to find consensus to deliver on our collective mandate. Those resorting to politicization only weaken the mandate of this Body,’ he told the conference.As the world’s single multilateral disarmament negotiating forum, as mandated by the Special Session on Disarmament (SSOD) -1, the CD’s agenda deals with critical challenges of disarmament and international security facing the international community. India advocates a comprehensive and balanced Programme of Work to enable the Conference to commence negotiations on issues of pressing global importance, he said.

“India is committed to the goal of universal, non-discriminatory and verifiable nuclear disarmament. Our call for complete elimination of nuclear weapons through a step-by-step process, as also outlined in our Working Paper on Nuclear Disarmament submitted to the CD in 2007 (CD/1816) has an enduring relevance. India reiterates its call to undertake the steps outlined in the Working Paper, including negotiation in the CD of a Comprehensive Nuclear Weapons Convention,’ he said.India, as a responsible nuclear weapon State, is committed as per its nuclear doctrine, to maintain credible minimum deterrence with the posture of no-first use and non-use against non-nuclear weapon States. Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space (PAROS), is another long standing item on the CD’s agenda. India looks forward to an early start of negotiations of a legally binding instrument on PAROS to address pressing issues relating to space security, the Foreign Secretary said.

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