India today expressed its readiness to participate in the negotiations on a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT) in the Conference on Disarmament (CD) and reiterated its commitment to maintaining credible minimum nuclear deterrence with the posture of no first use and non-use against non-nuclear weapon states as part of its nuclear doctrine.

“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 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,” Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said at the high-level Segment of the CD.

India, Shringla noted, has supported the immediate commencement of negotiations in the CD on a FMCT. Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space (PAROS), was 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,” he added.

He said the world began this year with high hope and expectation. India has welcomed the extension of the New START Treaty between Russia and the United States.

“However, much work needs to be done by us in the CD. 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 politicisation only weaken the mandate of this body,” he added.

The Indian diplomat said the Covid-19 pandemic has been perhaps the most disruptive global event in the world’s collective memory. While the pandemic exposed the vulnerabilities, it also underlined the need for global solidarity and strengthened multilateralism.

He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi, by delivering on his promise at the UN General Assembly to make Indian manufactured vaccines affordable and accessible to all of humanity, has once again shown that India was a force for global good.