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India stays away from UN talks on nuclear weapons ban

The United Nations (UN) held a conference that seeks to discuss the possibility of banning nuclear weapons entirely. This is the first such UN conference in more than 20 years. A UN General Assembly resolution regarding this conference was passed last year, in which, 120 nations voted in favor of it. The conference would seek to create a legally binding treaty that would prohibit nuclear weapons across the globe. While 120 countries voted in favor of this conference, the response was just the opposite from nuclear-armed countries such as Britain, France, Israel, Russia and the US. These countries had said no to this conference. There were also countries that had abstained from voting such as China, India and Pakistan.

In the first functional session of the conference, India stayed away from the proceedings. The Indian government reasoned that the country was not convinced if the conference would be able to achieve the purpose of global nuclear disarmament. India also said that the right forum for such talks is the Geneva-based Conference on Disarmament (CD). It also pointed out that verification is essential for global nuclear disarmament, which is currently not mandatory under the current process.

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