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Case Studies in Sanctions and Terrorism: India

Case Studies in Sanctions and Terrorism

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Case 98-1
US v. India (1998- : Nuclear Weapons Proliferation)

| Chronology of Key Events | Goals of Sender Country | Response to Target Country |
Attitude of Other Countries | Legal Notes | Economic Impact | Assessment |
Author's Summary |

Goals of Sender Country

President Bill Clinton
"The Indian government has put itself at odds with the international community over these nuclear tests. I hope India will reverse course from the dangerous path it has chosen by signing the CTBT immediately and without conditions." (USIS, 17 May 1998)

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright
"They [India and Pakistan] have only earned themselves the opprobrium of the international community and have made their people less secure, not to speak of poorer. The best reason for them not to test is that it is not in their national interest to test. I think if they have not discovered it already, they will." (USIS, 4 June 1998)

Assistant Secretary of State Karl Inderfurth
"We will be looking for both parties [India and Pakistan] to take such steps as:

• Sign and ratify CTBT without delay or condition

• Halt production of fissile material and participate constructively on FMCT [Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty] negotiations

• Accept IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency] safeguards on all nuclear facilities

• Agree not to deploy or test missile systems

• Maintain existing restraints against sharing nuclear and missile technology or equipment with others

• Agree upon a framework to reduce bilateral tensions, including on Kashmir" (USIS, 3 June 1998)

Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott
"[The sanctions imposed on India and Pakistan] were necessary for several reasons. First, it's the law. Second, sanctions create a disincentive for other states to exercise the nuclear option if they are contemplating it. And third, sanctions are part of our effort to keep faith with the much larger number of nations that have renounced nuclear weapons despite their capacity to develop them." (Morrow & Carriere 1999, 1)

National Security Advisor Samuel R. Berger, March 16, 2000
India must meet four conditions for the US to lift the remaining sanctions: adherence to the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, installation of strong export controls on goods and materials related to its nuclear program, cut-off the production of fissile material and restraint in its nuclear program. (USIS, 16 March 2000; Inside US Trade, 17 March 2000)


Response of Target Country

Prime Minister Atal Vajpayee
"Every decisive action has its consequences. But if the action is inherently in the national interest—and I believe our decision to conduct the tests is in [the] supreme national interest—then we have to face the consequences and overcome the challenge ... Sanctions cannot and will not hurt us. India will not be cowed down by any such threats and punitive steps." (India Today, 25 May 1998, 38)

Pramod Mahajan, adviser to the prime minister
"There is one message American businessmen naturally get: If you don't come, there are others who will. If it is not GE, it is GEC. If it is not Boeing, it is Airbus. If it is not American banks, it is European banks." (Wall Street Journal, 18 May 1998, A17)

Attitude of Other Countries

Foreign Minister Zhu Bangzao: "The Chinese government expresses grave concern about India conducting nuclear tests. India's conducting of nuclear tests runs against international trends and is detrimental to the peace and stability in South Asia." (International Herald Tribune, 13 May 1998, 1)

"China 'denounced' the Indian tests, it expressed only 'regret' over Pakistan's actions." (New York Times, 29 May 1998, A10)

Chief Cabinet Secretary Kanezo Muraoka: "Taking the situation very seriously, the government of Japan reiterated its strong demand to India that nuclear testing and development of nuclear weapons be stopped." (Asahi Evening News, 15 May 1998)

Japanese State Foreign Secretary Ichita Yamamoto: "..if and when India decided to sign the [Comprehensive Test Ban] treaty, we will be prepared to review the economic measures, including new economic cooperation projects." (BBC Worldwide Monitoring, 29 October 1999)

European Union
"The European Union condemns the series of underground tests of nuclear weapons carried out by India. It strongly calls on India to cease further testing ... The European Union notes that India has aspirations in the international community. It considers that the conduct of these tests has not advanced but hindered those ambitions." (European Union press release, 25 May 1998)

While Russian President Boris Yeltsin criticizes India's nuclear tests, he insists that the world should confine its punitive reaction to diplomatic pressure and not impose economic sanctions. (Financial Times, 13 May 1998, 7; New York Times, 14 May 1998, A13)

Legal Notes

1994 Glenn amendment, in Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Act of 1994 (Sec. 826-a): If ... the President determines that any country after April 30, 1994, ... (B) is a non-nuclear state and ... (ii) detonates a nuclear device, ... the President shall forthwith impose the following sanctions.

    (A) The United States Government shall terminate assistance to that country ... except for humanitarian assistance or other agricultural commodities.
    (B) The United States Government shall terminate (i) sales to that country under this act of any defense articles, defense services or design and construction services and (ii) licenses for the export to that country of any item on the United States Munitions List.
    (C) The United States Government shall terminate all foreign military financing for that country under this Act.
    (D) The United States Government shall deny to that country any credit, credit guarantees, or other financial assistance by any department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States Government, except ... [for] humanitarian assistance.
    (E) The United States Government shall oppose ... the extension of any loan or financial or technical assistance to that country by any international financial institution.
    (F) The United States Government shall prohibit any United States bank from making any loan or providing any credit to the government of that country, except for loans or credits for the purpose of purchasing food or other agricultural commodities.
    (G) The authorities of section 6 of the Export Administration Act of 1979 shall be used to prohibit exports to that country of specific goods and technology (excluding food and other agricultural commodities), except that such requirements shall not apply to any transaction subject to the reporting requirements of Title V of the National Security Act of 1947.

Waiver: None. The President may, however, delay the sanction for 30 session days.

Note: The administration never wrote the generic implementing regulations after the bill passed Congress and only released specific regulations implementing parts of the Indian and Pakistani sanctions on 19 November 1998, after most sanctions had been waived.

Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
"Under article XIV (Entry into force), the Treaty will not enter into force until it has been signed and ratified by the 44 States listed in annex 2 to the Treaty. … If the Treaty has not entered into force "three years after the date of the anniversary of its opening for signature" [24 September 1999], a conference of those States that have already ratified it may be held to decide what measures may be taken to accelerate the ratification process and to facilitate the Treaty's entry into force." (Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization,

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