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Nuclear deal: PM expected to seek Japan's support

PTI  New Delhi, August 20, 2007
First Published: 18:03 IST(20/8/2007) | Last Updated: 16:45 IST(22/8/2007)

Notwithstanding the Left warning against moving ahead on the Indo-US nuclear deal, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to seek Japan's backing on the initiative in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) when he holds talks with his counterpart Shinzo Abe in New Delhi on Wednesday.


"Yes, we will," Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon told journalists in New Delhi when asked whether the Indian side will discuss civil nuclear cooperation in general and NSG in particular.

The Left parties, providing crucial outside support to the government, have warned it of "serious consequences" on taking any step to operationalise the deal.

After the conclusion of civil nuclear deal with the US, India is required to persuade NSG to change its rules before the agreement can be implemented.

At present, India is lobbying with NSG countries individually. Japan is a key member of the 45-nation grouping whose support will be crucial as it is the only country to have suffered a nuclear bomb attack.

Menon, who was briefing the media on Abe's State visit here beginning tomorrow, said India has so far not asked Japan for support.

Singh and Abe will discuss framework for civil nuclear cooperation in the backdrop of Japan's decision to engage with India in such talks.

The two leaders, meeting for the second time in eight months, will also discuss ways to step up defence cooperation and economic ties besides all other aspects of bilateral relations.

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