India is a responsible nuclear state and believes in ‘no first use’ says Akbar

Vastavam web: Union minister M J Akbar today asserted that India is a responsible nuclear state and believes in ‘no first use’ of such weapons, even as he questioned why no action is being taken at the global level against proliferation.Speaking at a session on nuclear threats to international security here at the World Economic Forum (WEF), he said many countries see nuclear weapons as the ultimate deterrence and see “missiles as a message”.He said India’s approach is clear — it wants a nuclear regime that is non discriminatory.

“We have got support from so many countries on our approach and we hope that the world will work together on reducing if not eliminating the nuclear threats,” he said while adding that he is hopeful as everyone takes the threat of destruction seriously.Asked about both India and Pakistan having nuclear weapons, he said, “We can only speak from our position. I can’t speak on behalf of another country and we have these weapons as form of a deterrence and we believe in no first use.” Akbar said people have gotten away with proliferation and strong actions are needed against that.

Speaking in the same session, Beatrice Fihn of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons said the only solution is to abolish and eliminate nuclear weapons and it makes no sense for responsible countries to have such weapons that always present a major risk.”We are in Europe which has nuclear states and why don’t they lead the way? Can they seek public opinion on disarmament? At our level, we work very strongly through multilateral framework which is the only way forward.”We urge other nations to take steps and we hope this diligence with which we work towards a safer world will yield result,” he said.