Foreign Policy Watch: India-Pakistan

India, Pakistan conduct Annual Exchange of List of Nuclear Installations

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Non-Nuclear Aggression Agreement

Mains level : Pakistan's prospected economic default and collapse

pakistan

Central Idea

  • India and Pakistan has exchanged a list of their nuclear installations that cannot be attacked in case of an escalation in hostilities.

Non-Nuclear Aggression Agreement

  • The Non-nuclear aggression agreement is a bilateral and nuclear weapons control treaty between India and Pakistan, on the reduction (or limitation) of nuclear arms.
  • Both pledged not to attack or assist foreign powers to attack on each others nuclear installations and facilities.
  • The treaty was drafted in 1988, and signed by PM Rajiv Gandhi and his counterpart Benazir Bhutto on 21 December 1988; it entered into force on January 1991.
  • The treaty barred its signatories from carrying out a surprise attack (or to assist foreign powers to attack) on each other’s nuclear installations and facilities.
  • Starting in January 1992, India and Pakistan have annually exchanged lists of their respective military and civilian nuclear-related facilities.

Need for the treaty

  • In 1986-87, the massive exercise, ‘Brasstacks’ was carried out by the Indian Army, raising fears of an Indian attack on Pakistan’s nuclear facilities.
  • Since then, the Foreign ministries of both countries have been negotiating to reach an understanding towards the control of nuclear weapons.

Significance of the agreement

  • The treaty barred its signatories from carrying out a surprise attack (or to assist foreign powers to attack) on each other’s nuclear installations and facilities.
  • The treaty provides a confidence-building security measure environment.

Other: Sharing of Prisoners information

  • Both nations simultaneously share the list of prisoners in each other’s custody.
  • These lists are exchanged under the provisions of the Agreement on Consular Access signed in May 2008.
  • Under this pact, the two countries should exchange comprehensive lists on January 1 and July 1 every year (i.e. twice a year).

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