The United States is pressing Pakistan to sign the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty without delay but Islamabad insists that India must also be asked to reduce its nuclear stockpile, the US media reported on Wednesday.

US officials have urged Pakistan to “drop all resistance to the FMCT,” warning it was imperative that the measure move forward in 2010.

Pakistan, however, appears reluctant to accept any restriction on the production of nuclear material unless those restrictions are also applied to India. The US media reported President Obama had pushed for the ban, and his administration had urged a key UN disarmament body to persuade Pakistan to join the FMCT talks in Geneva.
The US media noted that India had a larger stock of fissile material and the capacity to build more warheads than Pakistan. Pakistan fears that India is gaining disproportionate power in South Asia after a 2008 agreement on civilian nuclear cooperation with the US.

Since the signing of the agreement, India also has made a series of strategic and economic cooperation deals with Russia and other countries to enhance its nuclear capabilities, the media reports added.

The Geneva disarmament conference can move forward only by consensus. This allows Pakistan to block agreement on a US proposal for a work plan, the next step in the negotiation process.

The FMCT has largely remained in suspended animation at the UN for the past 12 years but the Obama administration is now demanding that ban move forward exactly as currently proposed.